First national heritage tree: the huge lime tree in Heede

Preserving trees at the age of 400 years and more and allowing them to age with dignity - this is the aim of the Board of Trustees National Heritage Trees of the German Dendrological Society (DDG). Selected specimens receive the seal "National Heritage Tree". The award goes hand in hand with the fact that care, protection and environmental measures for these trees are promoted - if appropriate and necessary - from special funds. "It is impressive to realize that these trees must be able to tolerate all events and changes in environment and climate for such a long period of time. As a result, they are also expected to have a particularly high potential for adaptation, also with regard to the current climate change, "says Prof. Dr. med. Andreas Roloff, director of the board of trustees of national heritage trees of the DDG, "we have to do everything we can to preserve it for posterity".

"Heeder Sommer Linde" (huge lime tree in Heede) was named the first national heritage tree on 5.10.2019. It has a trunk circumference of about 17 meters and is the thickest full-trunked tree in Germany with an age of about 600-800 years. Back in 2014, DDG had named Dicke Linde in Heede the record tree of the year. It should now be placed under special protection.

Criteria for appointment to the National Heritage Tree are a trunk circumference of at least 400 centimeters or an age of at least 400 years. "Trees of this age optimize their life and growth processes in a very special way themselves. They are therefore - for example in their tree biology, genetics and pathology - also of great interest to science. The time has come to protect such age-old trees, allowing them to age with dignity, "summarizes Roloff.

Further nominations for national heritage trees this year will take place on Saturday, 19.10., At 14.00 (near Riesa, Saxony) and on Sunday, 27.10., At 10.00 (Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein).

Information about the project can be found at:


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The huge lime tree in Heede - first German national heritage tree.
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The huge lime tree in Heede - first German national heritage tree.