This is a non-native deciduous tree brought from Spain in the 17th century. It can grow to 35m and live for several hundred years.
Look out for: the bark, patterned like camouflage with large areas which peel away to reveal a creamy area below. The leaves have five triangular lobes similar to a sycamore but without serrated edges. Leaves turn rich orange-yellow in autumn.
It produces separate spherical female and male flowers in April/May on long stems. Those with individual tiny red flowers are female and male ones are greenish and shed yellow pollen. Later these develop into round spiky clusters of seedballs covered in stiff hairs.
This tree copes well with pollution and compacted soil, but very little wildlife is associated with this tree.
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