Discover the Beauty of Trees with Heart-Shaped Leaves

From a distance, trees captivate us with their majestic height, graceful branches, colorful flowers, and vibrant foliage. But have you ever taken a closer look at their leaves? You’ll be amazed to find that not all leaves are created equal. Some trees boast exquisite heart-shaped leaves that can add a touch of charm to your garden and front lawn.

In this article, we will explore a selection of tree species that feature these delightful heart-shaped leaves. Each tree offers a unique beauty and thrives in different environments. So, let’s dive in and discover the enchanting world of trees with heart-shaped leaves.

Empress Tree (Paulownia tomentosa)

Paulownia tomentosa growing in the garden

Originally hailing from eastern Asia, particularly western and central China, the Empress Tree, also known as the Foxglove Tree or Princess Tree, showcases large, soft, and vibrant heart-shaped green leaves. These deciduous trees reach heights of 20 to 50 feet and adorn themselves with fragrant lavender flowers in the spring. Empress Trees thrive in USDA hardiness zones 5 to 9 and prefer moist, slightly acidic soil with proper drainage. They can withstand partial sun or shade but thrive best under full sunlight.

Henry’s Lime (Tilia henryana)

Leaves of tilia henryana

Henry’s Lime, named after Irish nurseryman Augustine Henry, originated from China and was introduced to the West in the early 1900s. These trees feature heart-shaped green leaves with tooth-like structures along their edges, slender brown bark, and whitish or creamy yellow flowers that bloom from late summer to early autumn. Henry’s Lime thrives in USDA hardiness zones 6 to 8 and prefers moist, well-drained, and slightly alkaline soil. They flourish under partial or full sun.

Silver Linden (Tilia tomentosa)

Branch of silver linden or Tilia tomentosa with green leaves

Silver Linden, also known as Silver Lime or European White Lime, is abundant in Europe, southwestern Asia, and western Turkey. These medium to large-sized deciduous trees grow between 50 and 70 feet tall and boast silvery green heart-shaped leaves that turn yellow in the fall. Light-yellow flowers grace the trees in the early summer. Silver Lindens thrive in USDA hardiness zones 4 to 7, displaying remarkable resilience to hot climates, dry seasons, strong winds, and frost.

Northern Catalpa (Catalpa speciosa)

Northern Catalpa Flowers Budding Out in the Spring

Native to the midwestern United States, Northern Catalpa, also known as Catawba or Cigar Tree, stands tall between 40 and 70 feet, with a spread of 20 to 40 feet. These deciduous trees feature reddish-brown to grayish-brown bark, large heart-shaped green leaves, and bell-shaped white flowers that bloom from late spring to early summer. Northern Catalpas are well-suited to USDA hardiness zones 4 to 8 and exhibit high tolerance for various soil types, partial or full sun exposure, and even dry environments.

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White Mulberry (Morus alba)

White mulberry tree (scientific name Morus alba)

Native to northern China and India, White Mulberry trees are renowned for their role in the silk industry as a food source for silkworms. These small to medium-sized deciduous trees exhibit grayish-brown bark and glossy green leaves with a variety of shapes, including heart-shaped, lobed, and jagged edges. White Mulberry trees can reach heights of 40 to 60 feet and thrive in USDA hardiness zones 3 to 9. They flourish with exposure to partial or full sun and adapt well to different soil pH levels.

Quaking Aspen (Populus tremuloides)

These towering trees, also known as Trembling Aspens or Popples, are native to North America and are true marvels to behold. Quaking Aspens reach heights of 20 to 50 feet, with some specimens even soaring up to 70 feet. Their whitish-gray bark complements their yellowish-green heart-shaped leaves and dark green flowers that transform into shades of red or yellow during the autumn. These magnificent trees thrive in USDA hardiness zones 1 to 6 and require full sun exposure, as well as moist soil with proper drainage.

Italian Alder (Alnus cordata)

Italian Alder trees, originating from southern Italy and certain regions in Greece, grace landscapes with their medium-sized stature, growing between 20 and 80 feet tall with a spread ranging from 30 to 40 feet. These trees boast smooth gray bark, yellowish to reddish-brown flowers that bloom in the spring, and glossy heart-shaped green leaves that turn golden or brown during the fall. Italian Alder trees flourish in USDA hardiness zones 5 to 7 and exhibit adaptability to different soil pH levels. Their strength and resistance to wind make them ideal for planting in parks and front yards, providing ample shade and regulating temperature.

Yellow Catalpa (Catalpa ovata)

Flowers of the Indian bean tree (Catalpa bignonioides) also known as southern catalpa or cigartree

Yellow Catalpa trees, also known as Chinese Catalpas or Japanese Catalpas, grace landscapes with their vibrant flowers and heart-shaped leaves. These small to medium-sized deciduous trees grow between 20 and 30 feet tall, with a spread of approximately 20 feet. The orchid-like flowers that adorn their branches attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies during their summer blooming period from July to August. Yellow Catalpas thrive in moist, well-drained soil and prefer full sun exposure.

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Turkish Filbert Hazel (Corylus colurna)

Leaves of a Turkish hazel bush, Corylus colurna

Turkish Filbert Hazels, also known as Turkish Hazels, originate from southeastern Europe and western Asia. These medium to large-sized deciduous trees feature smooth, grayish-brown bark, green heart-shaped leaves, and light-yellow flowers that bloom in the early spring. Turkish Hazels grow to heights of 40 to 50 feet with a spread of 30 to 40 feet. They thrive in USDA hardiness zones 4 to 7 and adapt well to partial or full sun exposure. Turkish Hazels prefer moist, well-drained soil and make excellent choices for ornamental and shade trees.

Caucasian Lime (Tilia x euchlora)

Leaves and flowers of large-leaved linden, Tilia platyphyllos

Caucasian Lime trees, also known as Crimean Lime or Caucasian Linden, originate from the Crimean Peninsula near Ukraine. Produced through a cross between Tilia dasystyla and Tilia cordata species, these large deciduous trees grow between 40 and 60 feet tall, with an average spread of 20 to 30 feet. Glossy heart-shaped leaves and white to creamy flowers grace the trees from spring to summer. Thriving in USDA hardiness zones 3 to 8, Caucasian Lime trees exhibit tolerance to partial or full sun exposure. They prefer moist, well-drained soil and provide ample shade as beautiful additions to your property.

Eastern Redbud (Cercis canadensis)

Eastern Redbud trees are native to North America, adding a splash of colorful beauty to landscapes from west Oklahoma to New Jersey, southern Michigan, and central Mexico. These medium to large-sized deciduous trees dazzle with their multi-trunk structure, reddish-brown bark, green heart-shaped leaves, and whitish-purple or pink five-petaled flowers that bloom in the spring. Eastern Redbuds grow to heights of 20 to 30 feet with a spread of 25 to 35 feet. USDA hardiness zones 4 to 9 suit these trees, and they flourish in moist, well-drained soils under partial or full sun exposure.

Southern Catalpa (Catalpa bignonioides)

The pink leaves of the Katsura tree during the autumn

Southern Catalpas, also called Indian Bean or Cigar Trees, are medium-sized deciduous trees that originate from the southeastern United States, specifically Florida, Georgia, Alabama, and Louisiana. These trees reach heights of 30 to 60 feet, with a spread of 20 to 40 feet. Thick brown bark, glossy green heart-shaped leaves, and scented, trumpet-like white flowers that bloom in the late spring adorn these stunning trees. Southern Catalpas thrive in USDA hardiness zones 5 to 9 and tolerate varying soil pH levels. They prefer moist, well-drained soil and can withstand partial or full sun exposure.

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American Lime (Tilia americana)

American Lime trees, also known as American Linden or Basswood, grace eastern and central North America with their presence. These medium to large-sized deciduous trees grow between 50 and 80 feet tall, with a spread of 30 to 50 feet. Grayish-brown bark, glossy dark green heart-shaped leaves turning yellowish in the fall, and whitish-cream scented flowers that bloom in the spring are some of their distinguishing features. American Lime trees flourish in USDA hardiness zones 2 to 8 and adapt to partial or full sun exposure. They prefer moist, well-drained soil and attract birds and butterflies.

Large-Leaved Lime (Tilia platyphyllos)

Leaves and flowers of large-leaved linden, Tilia platyphyllos

Large-Leaved Lime trees, also known as Large-Leaved Lindens, are widespread across Europe and southwestern Asia. These medium to large-sized deciduous trees grow between 60 and 80 feet tall, with a spread of 30 to 50 feet, making them excellent candidates for shade plants. Thick brown bark, dark green heart-shaped leaves turning yellow during the fall, and whitish-yellow scented flowers that attract butterflies adorn these majestic trees. Large-Leaved Limes are low-maintenance and thrive in USDA hardiness zones 2 to 6. They prefer moist, well-drained soil and adapt well to partial or full sun exposure.

Katsura Tree (Cercidiphyllum japonicum)

The pink leaves of the Katsura tree during the autumn

Native to Japan and China, Katsura trees, also known as Japanese Judas trees or Caramel trees, enchant with their large size and striking foliage. These large-sized deciduous trees exhibit multi-trunked structures, brown bark, tiny red flowers in the spring, and large heart-shaped green leaves that transition into shades of reddish-purple, greenish-blue, coppery gold, and reddish-brown throughout the seasons. Katsura trees typically grow between 40 and 50 feet tall, with a spread of 25 to 35 feet. Thriving in USDA hardiness zones 4 to 8, Katsura trees prefer partial or full sun exposure, slightly acidic and well-drained soil, and add a sweet fragrance when their leaves decay in the fall.

Final Thoughts

While these trees share the delightful shape of heart-shaped leaves, each species possesses its own unique characteristics and requirements. From sun exposure and soil preferences to climate adaptation, there are numerous factors to consider when selecting the perfect tree for your environment. Take the time to choose a species that thrives in your local climate and suits your specific needs. With heart-shaped leaves gracing your landscape, you’ll experience the beauty and elegance of nature in a truly enchanting way.

For more information on these beautiful trees, visit the Ames Farm Center.

Note: The images used in this article are from the original source.