Ulmus 'Densa'

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Ulmus 'Densa'
Ulmus densa.jpg
OriginC. Asia

The elm cultivar Ulmus Densa was described from specimens growing near Ashkabad as U. densa Litv. in Schedae ad Herbarium Florae Rossicae (1908).[1] Litvinov, reporting it growing wild in the mountains of Turkestan, Ferghana, and Aksu, as well as in cultivation, considered it a species, a view upheld by the Soviet publications Trees and Shrubs in the USSR (1951)[2] and Flora of Armenia (1962),[3] and by some current plant lists.[4][5] Other authorities take it to be a form of U minor, distinctive only in its dense crown and upright branching.[6][7][8]

Litvinov considered U. minor 'Umbraculifera', with its "denser crown and more rounded form", a cultivar of U. densa,[6] calling it U. densa var. bubyriana. Rehder (1949) and Green (1964), ignoring reports of the wild form, considered U. densa a synonym of 'Umbraculifera'.[9][10] The U. densa photographed by Meyer in Aksu, Chinese Turkestan on his 1911-12 expedition does not appear to be the tidy grafted cultivar 'Umbraculifera' and was said to be named 'Seda'.[11][12] Zielińksi in Flora Iranica (1979) considered 'Umbraculifera' an U. minor cultivar.[13]

In its natural range U. densa overlaps with U. pumila. The extent of hybridization between the two is not known.


Litvinov noted that the tree "differed little from U. glabra Mill." [:U. minor] except in its erect branches and dense oblong crown.[14] The leaves were "generally smaller" and the branches "smooth and lighter in colour". As with the hybrid U. × androssowii, its compact branch structure helps the tree conserve moisture.[15]

Pests and diseases[edit]

Not known.


Litvinov said that U. densa was "widely cultivated" in gardens in Turkestan. It appears to be one of a number of elms known locally as 'karagach' [:'black tree' = elm].[16] In western Europe U. densa Litv. was distributed by Hesse's Nurseries, Weener, Germany, in the 1930s.[17]

Notable trees[edit]

A large, well-grown specimen stands in Dushanbe Botanic Gardens, Tajikistan (2019).[18][19]


These include one of the oldest of elm cultivars, 'Umbraculifera', and a number of elms introduced to the West by the Späth nursery of Berlin.

Meyer (1912) identified three cultivars of U. densa: 'Stamboul', 'Kitaisky' and 'Seda'.[20][12]

Hybrid cultivars[edit]

The tree, or its cultivar form 'Umbraculifera', has hybridised with U. pumila to produce U. × androssowii.


None known.


  1. ^ Schedae ad Herbarium Florae Rossicae , VI. 163-165 (1908)
  2. ^ Sokolov, S. Ya (1951). Деревья и кустарники СССР [Trees & Shrubs in the USSR] (in Russian). 2. Moscow. pp. 504–505.
  3. ^ Takhtajan, Armen Leonovich (1962). Флора Армении [Flora of Armenia] (in Russian). 4. Yerevan. pp. 341–342.
  4. ^ The Plant List: Ulmus densa Litv., accessdate: December 14, 2016
  5. ^ Tropicos: Name - Ulmus densa Litv., accessdate: December 14, 2016
  6. ^ a b Elwes, Henry John; Henry, Augustine (1913). The Trees of Great Britain & Ireland. 7. p. 1893.
  7. ^ De Langhe, Jan (7 April 2016). Vegetative key to species European cultivation (Ulmaceae) (PDF). Ghent: Ghent University Botanical Garden. p. 5. Retrieved 18 December 2016.
  8. ^ Plantarium: Ulmus densa - Галерея субтаксонов - Плантариум (in Russian), accessdate: December 18, 2016
  9. ^ Alfred Rehder (1949). "Bibliography of cultivated trees and shrubs hardy in the cooler temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere". Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University. p. 142.
  10. ^ Green, Peter Shaw (1964). "Registration of cultivar names in Ulmus". Arnoldia. Arnold Arboretum, Harvard University. 24 (6–8): 41–80. Retrieved 16 February 2017.
  11. ^ Meyer's photograph (5675) of Ulmus densa Turkestan. Aksu, Turkestan. February 1911
  12. ^ a b Meyer's photograph (5676) of Ulmus densa Turkestan. Aksu, Turkestan. February 1911
  13. ^ J. Zielińksi, 'Ulmaceae', Flora Iranica, ed. K. H. Rechinger (Graz, 1979)
  14. ^ Photograph captioned U. densa, uses.plantnet-project.org
  15. ^ World Digital Library: Elm Trees. Samarkand, accessdate: December 18, 2016
  16. ^ Rickmers, W. Rickmer, The Duab of Turkestan, a physiographic sketch and account of some travels (Cambridge, 1913), p.172
  17. ^ Hesse, Hermann Albert (1932). Preis- und Sortenliste. pp. 96–97. Retrieved 18 January 2018.
  18. ^ U. minor / Ulmus densa Litv. www.plantarium.ru
  19. ^ Google Maps: Dushanbe Botanic Gardens - Google Maps (May 2019), accessdate: August 21, 2019
  20. ^ Meyer, F. N. (1912). Seeds and plants imported during the period from January 1 to March 31, 1912: Inventory No.30, Nos 32829–32831. Bureau of Plant Industry - Bulletin No. 282. Washington, Government Printing Office, 1913.

External links[edit]