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London Plane

London Plane Tree
The London plane tree was cherished by Robert Moses, NYC Parks Commissioner from 1934 to 1960. It is thought that the Parks Department's distinctive logo is based on the leaf of a London plane. The London plane is a hybrid between the native American sycamore and the non-native oriental plane tree. The London plane was planted throughout Central Park from the north side of the Harlem Meer down the East Drive. Recently, London plane trees have been planted in Grand Army Plaza, replicating a historical design that included two rows of this beautiful tree.

Common Name: London Plane

Scientific Name: Platanus x acerifolia

Origin: Cross between oriental plane and American sycamore

Family: Platanaceae

Size: 70 - 80' tall, spread usually matches height

Form: Pyramidal in youth, rounded with age

Culture: Easily transplanted; best in deep, moist, fertile soil; very adaptable; thrives in full sun; pollution tolerant


6 - 7" long, alternate arrangement, three to five lobed, coarsely toothed edges, maple-like, medium to dark green


Separate male and female flowers, bloom in April, not ornamentally important


1" diameter, born in twos or threes, winter persistent


Ornamental, shedding plates reveal creamy yellow inner bark, photosynthesizes through bark