Ulmus glabra
wych elm

Ulmaceae (elm family)
Europe, Central Asia
Ulmus glabra ‘Camperdownii’, Canfield Court. John Rawlings, 25 May 2007

Wych elm, sometimes known as Scotch elm, is distinguished from English elm by having shorter leaf-stalks and larger fruits. The seed is situated in the center of the wing and there is a notch that does not reach the seed. The leaves are asymmetrical at the base, rough to the touch on top, and may have three points. It is not a common tree now in these parts, but an avenue of wych elms was planted on Museum Way in 1891. Two unimpressive specimens are in the northeast corner of Roth Way and Palm Drive; one on Lasuen Street between Roth Way and Museum Way; and one on Lasuen Street that may be a survivor of the avenue on Museum Way.

The variety ‘Camperdownii’ can be found in the Canfield Court lawn near Meyer Library. Planted at about 6 feet tall in February 2003, it has weeping limbs that reach to the ground. At Filoli in Woodside, Camperdown elms south of the swimming pool pavilion form a dense, high canopy. The original tree appeared as a sport of U. glabra in 1850 at Camperdown House near Dundee, Scotland.

Additions/Revisions: The two trees reported on the NE corner of Roth and Palm were removed 10/04: the larger of the two appeared to be an old tree about 25 feet tall [21 yards north of Roth and 55 yards to Palm Drive sidewalk]. The remaining Camperdown elm in Canfield Court was removed June 2008, suffering from sunscald, scales, root rot, and too much water.

Name derivation: Ulmus – classical Latin name for the elm.

About this Entry: The main text of this entry is from the book Trees of Stanford and Environs, by Ronald Bracewell, published 2005.