Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum

Tree of the Month - January 2016

Posted: January 12, 2016 at 16:30 pm Author: Dan Crowley

What is tree of the month?

Platanus orientalis (Oriental plane)

Oriental plane

Why is it tree of the month?

A parent of the often seen London plane, Platanus x hispanica (the other being Platanus occidentalis), the oriental plane is attractive in leaf and equally so without, with its patchwork bark exposed and fruit dangling from the branches. Attaining large proportions, it has more of a weeping habit than the hybrid and plants will layer, given the opportunity. In cultivation since the sixteenth century, it is native to southeastern Europe and western Asia.

Where can I find it?

Significant specimens can be found in the Old Arboretum on Mitchell Drive and Main Drive. Another characterful example can be found in Silk Wood on Willesley Drive close to the junction with Green Lane. Younger plants are also dotted around the collection, including known wild origin specimens from Cyprus, Lebanon and Turkey.