|Bark and young leaves, Antal Ben Shaddad, Jerusalem|
Ulmus canescens Melville is a small deciduous tree occasionally known by the common names grey elm, grey-leafed elm, and hoary elm. Its natural range extends through the lands of the central and eastern Mediterranean, from southern Italy, the islands of Sicily, Malta, Crete, Rhodes and Cyprus, to Turkey, and as far south as Israel, where it is now considered rare and endangered in the wild. The tree is typically found amidst the comparatively humid coastal woodlands and scrublands.
The tree is comparatively small, < 20 m high; the slender trunk, its bark coarsely fissured, supporting a rounded crown. The leaves are elliptic to ovate, bluntly toothed, and densely downy on the underside when mature, imbuing them with a distinctive greyish hue. The young shoots also have a whitish-grey down. The tree flowers in February and March, the round samarae, < 15 mm diameter, deeply notched at the outer end, ripen in April.
Pests and diseases
U. canescens is highly susceptible to Dutch elm disease.
U. canescens is occasionally planted as a street tree in Israel, notably in Jerusalem near the Damascus Gate along the Prophets Road and Antal Ben Shaddad street. In Nazareth, a line of mature trees is found along the road leading to the Basilica. It is also planted in Jordan, especially Amman. There are no known cultivars of this taxon, nor is it known to be in commerce.
- North America
- Morton Arboretum. Acc. no. 395-76
- Grange Farm Arboretum, Sutton St James, Spalding, Lincs., UK. Acc. no. 826.
- Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, UK. Acc. no. 20090690. From seed wild collected in Israel.
- Sir Harold Hillier Gardens, UK. Acc. no. 2009.0334. From seed wild collected in Israel.
- Richens, R. H., Elm (Cambridge 1983), p.18
- Scialabba, A., M. R. Melati, and F. M. Raimondo. "Taxonomic studies on the Sicilian elms: leaf structure of their species and hybrids." Bocconea 5.2 (1997): 493-504.
- Plant: Ulmus canescens (Hoary Elm): Wild Plants of Malta & Gozo - Plant: Ulmus canescens (Hoary Elm), accessdate: October 27, 2016
- 'Canescens' in Crete, (1) in the Apokoronas region: George Sfikas, Trees and shrubs of Greece (Athens, 2nd ed. 2001) p.140; (2) in the Aghia Irene gorge in the Temenos region: Natural Europe Project, University of Crete, europeana.eu https://www.europeana.eu/portal/record/2023901/content_7af226a0_c461_4c99_8ce8_9de4e41fa3ac.html Small leaved Elm, Ulmus minor subsp. canescens | Avramakis, M.
- Flore of Rhodes: Ulmus canescens - Flore of Rhodes, accessdate: October 27, 2016
- 'Canescens' in Turkey, "Herbarium specimen - E00405654". Herbarium Catalogue. Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.
- Flora of Israel Online: Ulmus minor Mill. | Flora of Israel Online, accessdate: October 27, 2016
- Richens, R. H. (1983). Elm. Cambridge University Press, England.
- Melville, R. (1978). On the discrimination of species in hybrid swarms with special reference to Ulmus and the nomenclature of U. minor (Mill.) and U. carpinifolia (Gled.). Taxon 27: 345-351
- Herbarium leaf-specimen, with rule: "Herbarium specimen - E00405654". Herbarium Catalogue. Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.
- Diagnostic photographs of 'Canescens' in Malta: Hoary elm, maltawildplants.com
- Bean, W. J. (1980). Trees and shrubs hardy in Great Britain. 8th edition. Murray, UK.
- Melville, R. (1957). "Ulmus canescens: an eastern Mediterranean elm." Kew Bulletin: 499-502, 1957
- Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. (2017). List of Living Accessions: Ulmus 
- Euforgen: elms[permanent dead link].
- Melville, R. (1 January 1957). "Ulmus canescens: An Eastern Mediterranean Elm". Kew Bulletin. 12 (3): 499–502. doi:10.2307/4113729. JSTOR 4113729.
- "Ulmus canescens Melville; specimen from Thrace K000852646". Herbarium catalogue. Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Retrieved 17 October 2016.
- "Ulmus dalmatica Baldacci K000852645". Herbarium catalogue. Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Retrieved 17 October 2016.
- "Herbarium specimen - E00405654". Herbarium Catalogue. Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. Sheet labelled Ulmus canescens Melville; specimen from Phaselis
- "Herbarium specimen - L.1582113". Botany catalogues. Naturalis Biodiversity Center. Sheet labelled U. minor Mill. subsp. canescens Melville; specimen from Adana, 1959