Ulmus 'Myrtifolia'

Last updated
Ulmus 'Myrtifolia'
Genus Ulmus
Cultivar 'Myrtifolia'

The elm cultivar Ulmus 'Myrtifolia', the Myrtle-leaved Elm, first appeared in nursery and horticultural lists from the 1830s, as Ulmus myrtifolia and Ulmus campestris myrtifolia, [1] [2] [3] the name Ulmus myrtifoliaVolxem being used at Kew Gardens from 1880. [4] Lawson's nursery of Edinburgh appears to have been the earliest to list the tree. [1] 'Myrtifolia' was listed by Nicholson in Kew Hand-List Trees & Shrubs (1896), but without description. [5] It was later listed as a cultivar and described by Rehder in 1939 [4] and by Krüssmann in 1962. [6]


The specimen under this name in the Herb. Nicholson at Kew was considered by Melville to be a probable U. minor × Ulmus minor 'Plotii' hybrid. [7]

The cultivar 'Myrtifolia Purpurea', which has larger leaves, is not related to 'Myrtifolia'. [4]


'Myrtifolia' was described as having leaves ovate or rhombic-ovate to oblong-ovate, 25 cm long with nearly simple teeth, loosely pilose on both sides. The petiole is 2 to 4 mm long, the samarae 12 to 15 mm long.


A 'Mytifolia' was present in North Road, Bath in 1902. [8] There were specimens at Arnold Arboretum in the mid-20th century, sourced in the 1920s from a tree in Cleveland, Ohio. [4]

The tree is not known to remain in cultivation.

Putative specimen

A small, slow-growing, dense-crowned old elm (15 m, girth 2 m), with very small narrow myrtle-like leaves, stands near 90 Lower Granton Rd, Edinburgh (2016), in a garden that was once part of the elm-planted grounds of Wardie House (demolished 1955). [9] Ulmus campestris myrtifolia appeared in the lists of the adjacent Wardie Nursery (Lawson Nursery group) in the late 19th century, [3] and Ulmus myrtifolia in the Lawson's of Edinburgh lists from the 1830s. [10] Its leaves, which flush and fall late, [11] are lance-shaped or oval (24.5 cm by 1.32 cm; petioles 0.51 cm). The tree, which has smooth branchlets, has been grafted on to a suberose U. minor stock.


Related Research Articles

<i>Ulmus minor</i> Sarniensis Cultivar of the field elm

The Field Elm cultivar Ulmus minor 'Sarniensis', known variously as Guernsey Elm, Jersey Elm, Wheatley Elm, or Southampton Elm, was first described by MacCulloch in 1815 from trees on Guernsey, and was planted in the Royal Horticultural Society's gardens in the 1820s. It was listed in the Loddiges catalogue of 1836 as Ulmus sarniensis and by Loudon in Hortus lignosus londinensis (1838) as U. campestris var. sarniensis. The origin of the tree remains obscure; Richens believed it "a mutant of a French population of Field elm", noting that "elms of similar leaf-form occur in Cotentin and in northern Brittany. They vary much in habit but some have a tendency to pyramidal growth. Whether the distinctive habit first developed on the mainland or in Guernsey is uncertain."

<i>Ulmus</i> × <i>hollandica</i> Wredei Hybrid elm cultivar

The hybrid elm cultivar Ulmus × hollandica 'Wredei', also known as Ulmus × hollandica 'Dampieri Aurea' and sometimes marketed as Golden Elm, originated as a sport of the cultivar 'Dampieri' at the Alt-Geltow Arboretum, near Potsdam, Germany, in 1875.

<i>Ulmus minor</i> Atinia Variegata Elm cultivar

The Field Elm cultivar Ulmus minor 'Atinia Variegata', the Variegated-leaved common English Elm, formerly known as U. procera 'Argenteo-Variegata' and described by Weston (1770) as U. campestris argenteo-variegata, is believed to have originated in England in the seventeenth century and to have been cultivated since the eighteenth. The Oxford botanist Robert Plot mentioned in a 1677 Flora a variegated elm in Dorset, where English Elm is the common field elm. Elwes and Henry (1913) had no doubt that the cultivar was of English origin, "as it agrees with the English Elm in all its essential characters". At the Dominion Arboretum, Ottawa, the tree was listed as U. procera 'Marginata', as the variegation is sometimes most obvious on leaf-margins.

<i>Ulmus minor</i> Viminalis Aurea Elm cultivar

The Field Elm cultivar Ulmus minor 'Viminalis Aurea', probably a "golden" form of Ulmus minor 'Viminalis', was raised before 1866 by Egide Rosseels of Louvain, who was known to have supplied 'Viminalis'.

<i>Ulmus</i> Purpurea Elm cultivar

The elm cultivar Ulmus 'Purpurea', the purple-leaved elm, was listed and described as Ulmus Stricta Purpurea, the 'Upright Purpled-leaved Elm', by John Frederick Wood, F.H.S., in The Midland Florist and Suburban Horticulturist (1851), as Ulmus purpureaHort. by Wesmael (1863), and as Ulmus campestris var. purpurea, syn. Ulmus purpureaHort. by Petzold and Kirchner in Arboretum Muscaviense (1864). Koch's description followed (1872), the various descriptions appearing to tally. Henry (1913) noted that the Ulmus campestris var. purpureaPetz. & Kirchn. grown at Kew as U. montana var. purpurea was "probably of hybrid origin", Ulmus montana being used at the time both for wych elm cultivars and for some of the U. × hollandica group. His description of Kew's U. montana var. purpurea matches that of the commonly-planted 'Purpurea' of the 20th century. His discussion of it (1913) under U. campestris, however, his name for English Elm, may be the reason why 'Purpurea' is sometimes erroneously called U. procera 'Purpurea' (as in USA and Sweden.

<i>Ulmus</i> Crispa Elm cultivar

The elm cultivar Ulmus 'Crispa' [:'curled', the leaf margin], sometimes known as the Fernleaf Elm, arose before 1800 and was first listed by Willdenow as U. crispa (1809). Audibert listed an U. campestrisLinn. 'Crispa', orme à feuilles crépues [:'frizzy-leaved elm'], in 1817, and an Ulmus urticaefolia [:'nettle-leaved elm'] in 1832; the latter is usually taken to be a synonym. Loudon considered the tree a variety of U. montana (1838). In the 19th century, Ulmus × hollandica cultivars, as well as those of Wych Elm, were often grouped under Ulmus montana. Elwes and Henry (1913) listed 'Crispa' as a form of wych elm, but made no mention of the non-wych samara.

<i>Ulmus minor</i> Propendens Elm cultivar

The Field Elm cultivar Ulmus minor 'Propendens', described by Schneider in 1904 as U. glabra (:minor) var. suberosa propendens, Weeping Cork-barked elm, was said by Krüssmann (1976) to be synonymous with the U. suberosa pendula listed by Lavallée without description in 1877. Earlier still, Loudon's Arboretum et Fruticetum Britannicum had included an illustration of a pendulous "cork-barked field elm", U. campestris suberosa. An U. campestris suberosa pendula was in nurseries by the 1870s.

<i>Ulmus minor</i> Rueppellii Elm cultivar

Ulmus minor 'Rueppellii' is a Field Elm cultivar said to have been introduced to Europe from Tashkent by the Späth nursery, Berlin. Noted in 1881 as a 'new elm', it was listed in Späth Catalogue 73, p. 124, 1888–89, and in subsequent catalogues, as Ulmus campestris Rueppelli, and later by Krüssmann as a cultivar.

<i>Ulmus</i> Berardii Elm cultivar

The elm cultivar Ulmus 'Berardii', Berard's Elm, was raised in 1865, as Ulmus Berardi, from seeds collected from large specimens of "common elm" growing on the ramparts at Metz, by an employee of the Simon-Louis nursery named Bérard. Carrière (1887), the Späth nursery of Berlin and the Van Houtte nursery of Gentbrugge regarded it as form of a Field Elm, listing it as U. campestris Berardii, the name used by Henry. Cheal's nursery of Crawley distributed it as Ulmus nitens [:Ulmus minor] 'Berardii'. Smith's of Worcester preferred the original, non-specific name, Ulmus 'Berardii'.

<i>Ulmus</i> Koopmannii Elm cultivar

The elm cultivar Ulmus 'Koopmannii' was cloned from a specimen raised from seed sent from Margilan, Turkestan by Koopmann to the Botanischer Garten Berlin c. 1880. Noted in 1881 as a 'new elm', it was later listed by the Späth nursery, catalogue no. 62, p. 6. 101, 1885, as Ulmus Koopmannii, and later by Krüssmann in 1962 as a cultivar of U. minor. Margilan is beyond the main range of Ulmus minor. Augustine Henry, who saw the specimens in Berlin and Kew, believed Koopmann's Elm to be a form of Ulmus pumila, a view not shared by Rehder of the Arbold Arboretum. Ascherson & Graebner said the tree produced 'very numerous root shoots', which suggests it may be a cultivar of U. minor. Until DNA analysis can confirm its origin, the cultivar is now treated as Ulmus 'Koopmannii'.

<i>Ulmus glabra</i> Nana Elm cultivar

The dwarf wych elm cultivar Ulmus glabra 'Nana', a very slow growing shrub that with time forms a small tree, is of unknown origin. It was listed in the Simon-Louis 1869 catalogue as Ulmus montana nana. Henry (1913), referring his readers to an account of the Kew specimen in the journal Woods and Forests, 1884, suggested that it may have originated from a witch's broom. It is usually classified as a form of Ulmus glabra and is known widely as the 'Dwarf Wych Elm'. However, the ancestry of 'Nana' has been disputed in more recent years, Melville considering the specimen once grown at Kew to have been a cultivar of Ulmus × hollandica.

The elm cultivar Ulmus 'Tortuosa'Host, the Wiggly Elm, was described by Host in Flora Austriaca (1827) as Ulmus tortuosa, from low, twisted, small-leaved trees that grew in the hilly districts of Hungary. A contemporary herbarium specimen (1833) from Central Europe labelled U. tortuosaHost appears to show small field elm-type leaves. Henry distinguished 'Tortuosa' Host from Loddiges' and Loudon's U. tortuosa, which he identified with Ulmus 'Modiolina', "l'orme tortillard" of France. Henry noted, however, that abnormal sinuous or zigzagging growth "might occur in any kind of elm", and herbarium specimens of elms labelled 'Tortuosa' range from U. minor cultivars to hybrid cultivars, some treated as synonymous with 'Modiolina'. A large-leaved U. campestris tortuosa was described by David in Revue horticole (1846), while a hybrid var. tortuosa cultivar from Louveigné, Belgium, with twisted trunk and large leaves, was described by Aigret in 1905. An U. campestris suberosa tortuosa was marketed in the 1930s by the Hesse Nursery of Weener, Germany, by its description a contorted form of corky-barked field elm.

<i>Ulmus</i> × <i>hollandica</i> Klemmer Elm cultivar

Ulmus × hollandica 'Klemmer', or Flanders Elm, is probably one of a number of hybrids arising from the crossing of Wych Elm with a variety of Field Elm, making it a variety of Ulmus × hollandica. Originating in the Bruges area, it was described by Gillekens in 1891 as l'orme champêtre des Flandres in a paper which noted its local name, klemmer, and its rapid growth in an 1878–91 trial. Kew, Henry (1913), and Krüssmann (1976) listed it as an Ulmus × hollandica cultivar, though Henry noted its "similarity in some respects" to field elm Ulmus minor, while Green went as far as to regard it as "possibly U. carpinifolia" (:minor).

<i>Ulmus</i> × <i>hollandica</i> Superba Elm cultivar

The hybrid elm cultivar Ulmus × hollandica 'Superba' is one of a number of intermediate forms arising from the crossing of the Wych Elm U. glabra with a variety of Field Elm U. minor. Boulger tentatively (1881) and Green more confidently (1964) equated it with a hybrid elm cultivated in the UK by Masters at Canterbury in the early 19th century, known as "Masters' Canterbury Seedling" or simply the Canterbury Elm. Loudon examined a specimen sent by Masters and considered it a hybrid, calling it U. montana glabra major.

The Field Elm cultivar Ulmus minor 'Microphylla Pendula', the Weeping small-leaved elm, was first listed by the Travemünde nursery, Lübeck, and described by Kirchner in Petzold & Kirchner's Arboretum Muscaviense (1864), as Ulmus microphylla pendulaHort.. By the 1870s it was being marketed in nurseries in Europe and America as Ulmus campestris var. microphylla pendula.

<i>Ulmus minor</i> Purpurascens Elm cultivar

The Field Elm cultivar Ulmus minor 'Purpurascens' was listed by Lavallée in Arboretum Segrezianum (1877) as U. campestris var. purpurascens (purpurea), but without description, and later by Schneider in Illustriertes Handbuch der Laubholzkunde (1904). Krüssmann in Handbuch der Laubgehölze (1962) identified it as a cultivar.

<i>Ulmus minor</i> Suberosa Elm cultivar

The Field Elm cultivar Ulmus minor 'Suberosa', commonly known as the Cork-barked elm, is a slow-growing or dwarf form of conspicuously suberose Field Elm. Of disputed status, it is considered a distinct variety by some botanists, among them Henry (1913), Krüssmann (1984), and Bean (1988), and is sometimes cloned and planted as a cultivar. Henry said the tree "appears to be a common variety in the forests of central Europe", Bean noting that it "occurs in dry habitats". By the proposed rule that known or suspected clones of U. minor, once cultivated and named, should be treated as cultivars, the tree would be designated U. minor 'Suberosa'. The Späth nursery of Berlin distributed an U. campestris suberosa alataKirchn. [:'corky-winged'] from the 1890s to the 1930s.

The Field Elm cultivar Ulmus minor 'Viminalis Betulaefolia' (:'birch-leaved') is an elm tree of uncertain origin. An U. betulaefolia was listed by Loddiges of Hackney, London, in the catalogue of 1836, an U. campestris var. betulaefolia by Loudon in Arboretum et Fruticetum Britannicum (1838), and an U. betulifoliaBooth by the Lawson nursery of Edinburgh. Henry described an U. campestris var. betulaefolia at Kew in 1913, obtained from Fulham nurseryman Osborne in 1879, as "scarcely different from var. viminalis ". Melville considered the tree so named at Kew a form of his U. × viminalis, while Bean (1988), describing U. 'Betulaefolia', likewise placed it under U. 'Viminalis' as an apparently allied tree. Loudon and Browne had noted that some forms of 'Viminalis' can be mistaken for a variety of birch. An U. campestris betulaefolia was distributed by Hesse's Nurseries, Weener, Germany, in the 1930s.

<i>Ulmus</i> Myrtifolia Purpurea Elm cultivar

The Elm cultivar Ulmus 'Myrtifolia Purpurea', the Purple Myrtle-leaved Elm, was first mentioned by Louis de Smet of Ghent (1877) as Ulmus myrtifolia purpurea. An U. campestris myrtifolia purpureaHort. was distributed by Louis van Houtte in the 1880s, by the Späth nursery, Berlin, in the 1890s and early 1900s, and by the Hesse Nursery, Weener, Germany, till the 1930s.

<i>Ulmus glabra</i> Superba Elm cultivar

The wych elm cultivar Ulmus glabraHuds. 'Superba', Blandford Elm, with unusually large leaves, was raised by Gill's of Blandford Forum, Dorset, in the early 1840s as Ulmus montana superba and was quickly distributed to other UK nurseries. It was confirmed as a form of wych, and first described, by Lindley in The Gardeners' Chronicle, 1845, later descriptions being added by Gill (1845) and Morren (1848), who called it U. montana var. superba. Morren had adopted the name 'Superba' from the Fulham nurseryman Osborne in 1844, who supplied him with the tree – presumably one of the nurseries supplied by Gill. Morren states that 'Superba', already in cultivation in England, was introduced to Belgium by Denis Henrard of Saint Walburge, Liège, that in 1848 it had been present in Belgium for only three years, and that this variety was the one described as 'Superba' by Osborne, whom Henrard had visited at his nursery in Fulham in September 1844. 'Blandford Elm', with leaves of the same dimensions, was soon for sale in the USA.


  1. 1 2 Loudon, J. C., Hortus lignosus londinensis: or, A catalogue of plants ... cultivated in the gardens and grounds in the neighbourhood of London: with all their synonyms, including their French, German, and Italian names; ... To which are added ... hardy trees and shrubs in the principal nurseries of London and Edinburgh, and at Bollwyller in France, and in Hamburg (London, 1838), p.145
  2. Report of the Board on behalf of United States Executive Departments at the International Exhibition held at Philadelphia 1876 (Washington 1884), vol 2, The Department of Agriculture: Horticultural and Propagating Division; p.311
  3. 1 2 The Lawson Company's List, no. IV, Forest Trees & Shrubs, Nov. 1874; Lawson Seed & Nursery Co., Edinburgh & London, p.25
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 Rehder, Alfred (1939). "Rehder, new species, varieties and combinations". Journal of the Arnold Arboretum. 20: 87–88. Retrieved 12 August 2016.
  5. Nicholson, Kew Hand-List Trees & Shrubs, vol.2 (London 1896), p.135
  6. Krüssmann, J. G., Handbuch der Laubgehölze 2: 540, 1962
  7. Green, Peter Shaw (1964). "Registration of cultivar names in Ulmus". Arnoldia. Arnold Arboretum, Harvard University. 24 (6–8): 41–80. Retrieved 16 February 2017.
  8. Inman, T. Frederic (1905). "The Elm". Proceedings of the Bath Natural History and Antiquarian Field Club. 10: 37. Retrieved 19 August 2016.
  9. Around Edinburgh - Lower Granton Road and Wardie from Granton Harbour Around Edinburgh - Lower Granton Road and Wardie from Granton Harbour, accessdate: August 12, 2016
  10. Loudon, J. C., Hortus lignosus londinensis (London, 1838), p.145-6
  11. Google Maps: A901 - Google Maps, accessdate: August 12, 2016
  12. Bean, W. J., Kew Hand-list of Trees and Shrubs, 1934, p.341