World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Celtis australis

Article Id: WHEBN0002952124
Reproduction Date:

Title: Celtis australis  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Honeyberry, Lote tree, Manger Square, List of trees of Iran, Mehringdamm
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Celtis australis

European nettle tree
Celtis australis[1]
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Rosales
Family: Cannabaceae
Genus: Celtis
Species: C. australis
Binomial name
Celtis australis

Celtis australis, commonly known as the European nettle tree, Mediterranean hackberry, lote tree, or honeyberry,[2] is a deciduous tree native to southern Europe, North Africa, and Asia Minor. The tree was introduced to England in 1796.[3]


  • Description 1
  • Notable trees 2
  • Cultivation 3
  • Etymology 4
  • Uses 5
  • History 6
  • Secondary metabolites 7
  • References 8


The tree can grow to 25 m in height, though 10 m is more common in cooler climates. The bark is smooth and grey, almost elephantine. [4] The alternate leaves are narrow and sharp-toothed, rugose above and tomentose below, 5–15 cm long and dark grey/green throughout the year, fading to a pale yellow before falling in autumn. The apetalous wind-pollinated flowers are drupe, 1 cm wide, hanging in short clusters, and are extremely popular with birds and other wildlife.

Notable trees

A large specimen planted in 1550 stands before the church in the village perché of Fox-Amphoux in the Provence region of southern France. The tree was 18 m in height with a d.b.h. of 5 m in 2013. [2]


The plant prefers light well-drained (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils, including those nutritionally poor; it can tolerate drought but not shade. The Mediterranean climate is especially suitable for the plant.


English: the honeyberry tree, European hackberry, hackberry, nettle tree, mediterranean hackberry; French: micocoulier; German: Zurgelbaum; Hindi: ku, batkar, khark, khirk, roku; Italian: perlaro, bagolaro; Nepali: khari; Spanish: almez, lodón, ladón, ojaranzo, hojaranzo; Serbian: копривић, коштела, кошћела, костјела. Trade names: nettle wood, brimji. [5]Türkce: çitlembik


It is often planted as an ornamental as it is resistant to air pollution and long-living. The fruit of this tree is sweet and edible, and can be eaten raw or cooked. The leaves and fruit are astringent, lenitive and stomachic. Decoction of both leaves and fruit is used in the treatment of amenorrhoea, heavy menstrual and inter-menstrual bleeding and colic. The decoction can also be used to astringe the mucous membranes in the treatment of diarrhoea, dysentery and peptic ulcers. A yellow dye is obtained from the bark. The wood is very tough, pliable, durable and widely used by turners; the flexible thin shoots are used as walking sticks.


Celtis australis is supposed to have been the Lotus of the ancients, whose fruit Herodotus, Dioscorides, and Theophrastus describe as sweet, pleasant, and wholesome. Homer has Ulysses refer to the "Lotus-eaters" and the "lotus" in Odyssey, Book IX.[6] The fruit and its effects are described in Tennyson's poem The Lotos-Eaters.

Secondary metabolites

The leaves of Celtis australis are a rich source of flavonoid C-glycosides.[7][8] Young leaves of Celtis australis from Northern Italy were found to contain the highest amounts of phenolics per gram dry weight. Amounts rapidly decreased until mid-May and after this date the level of phenolics fluctuated but showed no discernible trend. This general trend of high amounts of phenolics in the early growing season and a fast decline affected both caffeic acid derivatives and flavonoids.[9]


  1. ^ 1885 illustration from Prof. Dr. Otto Wilhelm Thomé Flora von Deutschland, Österreich und der Schweiz 1885, Gera, Germany
  2. ^ Bailey, L.H.; Bailey, E.Z.; the staff of the Liberty Hyde Bailey Hortorium. 1976. Hortus third: A concise dictionary of plants cultivated in the United States and Canada. Macmillan, New York.
  3. ^ Hillier Nurseries Ltd. (1977). Hilliers' Manual of Trees & Shrubs, 4th edition, p.70. David & Charles, Newton Abbott, UK. ISBN 0-7153-7460-5
  4. ^ More, D. & White, J. (2003).Trees of Britain & Northern Europe, p. 417. Cassells, London. ISBN 0-304-36192-5.
  5. ^ Celtis australis (Ulmaceae): Nettle Wood, Brimji.
  6. ^ Keeler, Harriet L. (1900). Our Native Trees and How to Identify Them. New York: Charles Scriber's Sons. pp. 249–252. 
  7. ^ Spitaler, R; Gurschler, S; Ellmerer, E; Schubert, B; Sgarbossa, M; Zidorn, C (2009). "Flavonoids from Celtis australis (Cannabaceae)". Biochemical Systematics and Ecology (Amsterdam, The Netherlands) 37: 120–121.  
  8. ^ Kaltenhauser, M; Ellmerer, EP; Zidorn, C (2010). "Rhamnopyranosylvitexin derivatives from Celtis australis". Journal of the Serbian Chemical Society (Belgrade, Serbia) 75: 733–738.  
  9. ^ Sommavilla, V; Haidacher-Gasser, D; Sgarbossa, M; Zidorn, C (2012). "Seasonal variation in phenolics in leaves of Celtis australis (Cannabaceae)". Biochemical Systematics and Ecology (Amsterdam, The Netherlands) 41: 110–114.  
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.