London Plane

┬ęChris Guise

London plane

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Scientific name: Platanus x hispanica
The London plane tree is, as its name suggests, a familiar sight along the roadsides and in the parks of London. An introduced and widely planted species, it is tough enough to put up with city life.

Top facts


Height: 18-35m

Conservation status

Introduced, non-native species.

When to see

January to December


The London plane tree is a tall, widely planted tree that can be found in parklands and by roadsides, particularly in London. It was first planted here in the 17th century and became prolific our towns in the 19th century, although it has never been found growing wild. It is a particularly popular choice for city planting because it rarely sheds its branches and is tough, putting up with the compacted soils and pollution of towns.

What to look for

London plane trees have large, sycamore-like leaves, fluffy fruits hanging in 'strings', and flaky, grey bark.

Where to find

Widely planted in Southern England.

Did you know?

The London plane tree is actually a hybrid between the Oriental plane and the American plane.