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Leigh Woods Whitebeam

Sorbus leighensis

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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Rosaceae (Rose)
Also in this family:
Acute Leaf-lobed Lady's-mantle, Alpine Cinquefoil, Alpine Lady's-mantle, Ampfield Cotoneaster, Arran Service Tree, Arran Whitebeam, Barren Strawberry, Bastard Agrimony, Bastard Service Tree, Bearberry Cotoneaster, Bird Cherry, Blackthorn, Bloody Whitebeam, Bramble, Bristol Whitebeam, Broad-leaved Whitebeam, Broadtooth Lady's-mantle, Bronze Pirri-pirri-bur, Bullace Plum, Bullate Cotoneaster, Burnet Rose, Catacol Whitebeam, Caucasian Lady's-mantle, Cheddar Whitebeam, Cherry Laurel, Cherry Plum, Chinese Photinia, Cloudberry, Clustered Lady's-mantle, Common Agrimony, Common Hawthorn, Common Lady's-mantle, Common Medlar, Common Ninebark, Common Whitebeam, Crab Apple, Creeping Chinese Bramble, Creeping Cinquefoil, Crimean Lady's-mantle, Cultivated Apple, Cultivated Pear, Cut-leaved Blackberry, Damson, Devon Whitebeam, Dewberry, Diel's Cotoneaster, Dog Rose, Doward Whitebeam, Dropwort, Elm-leaved Bramble, English Whitebeam, Entire-leaved Cotoneaster, False Salmonberry, Field Rose, Firethorn, Fodder Burnet, Fragrant Agrimony, Franchet's Cotoneaster, Garden Lady's-mantle, Garden Strawberry, Giant Meadowsweet, Glaucous Dog Rose, Goatsbeard Spiraea, Gough's Rock Whitebeam, Great Burnet, Greengage Plum, Grey-leaved Whitebeam, Hairless Lady's-mantle, Hairy Lady's-mantle, Hautbois Strawberry, Himalayan Blackberry, Himalayan Cotoneaster, Himalayan Whitebeam, Hoary Cinquefoil, Hollyberry Cotoneaster, Hupeh Rowan, Hybrid Cinquefoil, Hybrid Geum, Irish Whitebeam, Japanese Cherry, Japanese Quince, Japanese Rose, Jew's Mallow, Juneberry, Lancaster Whitebeam, Late Cotoneaster, Least Lady's-mantle, Least Whitebeam, Ley's Whitebeam, Liljefor's Whitebeam, Littleleaf Cotoneaster, Llangollen Whitebeam, Llanthony Whitebeam, Lleyn Cotoneaster, Loganberry, Many-flowered Rose, Margaret's Whitebeam, Marsh Cinquefoil, Meadowsweet, Midland Hawthorn, Mougeot's Whitebeam, Mountain Ash, Mountain Avens, Mountain Sibbaldia, Moupin's Cotoneaster, No Parking Whitebeam, Ocean Spray, Orange Whitebeam, Pale Bridewort, Pale Lady's-mantle, Parsley Piert, Pirri-pirri-bur, Plymouth Pear, Portuguese Laurel, Purple-flowered Raspberry, Quince, Raspberry, Rock Cinquefoil, Rock Lady's-mantle, Rock Whitebeam, Round-leaved Dog Rose, Round-leaved Whitebeam, Rum Cherry, Russian Cinquefoil, Salad Burnet, Sargent's Rowan, Scannell's Whitebeam, Service Tree, Sharp-toothed Whitebeam, Sherard's Downy Rose, Shining Lady's-mantle, Ship Rock Whitebeam, Short-styled Rose, Shrubby Cinquefoil, Silver Lady's-mantle, Silverweed, Slender Parsley Piert, Slender-spined Bramble, Small-flowered Sweetbriar, Small-leaved Sweetbriar, Soft Downy Rose, Somerset Whitebeam, Sorbaria, Sour Cherry, Southern Downy Rose, Southern Lady's-mantle, Spineless Acaena, Spring Cinquefoil, St. Lucie's Cherry, Steeplebush, Stern's Cotoneaster, Stirton's Whitebeam, Stone Bramble, Sulphur Cinquefoil, Swedish Service Tree, Swedish Whitebeam, Sweet Briar, Symond's Yat Whitebeam, Tengyueh Cotoneaster, Thimbleberry, Thin-leaved Whitebeam, Tibetan Cotoneaster, Tormentil, Trailing Tormentil, Tree Cotoneaster, Trefoil Cinquefoil, Twin-cliffs Whitebeam, Two-spined Acaena, Wall Cotoneaster, Water Avens, Waterer's Cotoneaster, Waxy Lady's-mantle, Welsh Cotoneaster, Welsh Whitebeam, White Burnet, White's Whitebeam, White-stemmed Bramble, Wild Cherry, Wild Pear, Wild Plum, Wild Service Tree, Wild Strawberry, Willmott's Whitebeam, Willow-leaved Bridewort, Willow-leaved Cotoneaster, Wineberry, Wood Avens, Wye Whitebeam, Yellow-flowered Strawberry
Deciduous tree
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
15 metres tall
Mountains, woodland.

White, 5 petals
Clusters of white flowers.
The fruit of the Whitebeam is a berry.
The leaf is light green on top and silvery-grey beneath. The leaves are broadest near their tips. Up to 10cm long and 7cm wide. Found in Leigh Woods in the Avon Gorge.
Frequency (UK):
Rarely seen  

Similar Species

Other Information


Sorbus leighensis is a species of whitebeam tree native to the mountains of Scotland. It is a small to medium-sized tree, typically growing to around 10-15 meters in height, with a narrow, conical crown. The leaves are oval in shape and are a glossy dark green, turning yellow in autumn. The small white flowers appear in clusters in late spring, followed by red berries in the autumn. It is a hardy tree and can grow in a variety of soils and climatic conditions. It is considered to be a rare and threatened species.


Leigh Woods Whitebeam (Sorbus leighensis) is a rare and unique species of tree that is native to Leigh Woods in Bristol, England. This species was first discovered and described in the late 19th century and is now considered to be one of the most important and threatened trees in the UK.

One of the most distinctive features of Leigh Woods Whitebeam is its leaves, which are deeply divided and have a silver-grey appearance on the undersides. The tree also produces clusters of white flowers in the spring, which are followed by small, round berries in the autumn.

Despite its beauty and rarity, Leigh Woods Whitebeam is under threat from a number of factors. One of the main threats is habitat loss due to deforestation and development, as well as the destruction of ancient woodland. In addition, the tree is also susceptible to a number of pests and diseases, which can weaken the tree and make it more vulnerable to other threats.

In order to protect this species, it is important that efforts are made to conserve its habitat and prevent further habitat destruction. This can be done by planting new trees and creating new woodland, as well as by protecting existing woodland from destruction and degradation.

Despite the challenges that Leigh Woods Whitebeam faces, it remains an important and valuable species. With the right conservation measures in place, it is possible to protect this tree for future generations to enjoy and appreciate.

Leigh Woods Whitebeam is a rare and beautiful tree that is in need of protection. By working together to conserve its habitat, we can help ensure that this species continues to thrive for generations to come.

The Leigh Woods Whitebeam is a slow-growing tree that can reach a height of up to 20 meters. Its trunk can grow up to 60 cm in diameter and has a unique, rough bark that is covered in lichen.

One of the most fascinating things about Leigh Woods Whitebeam is its rarity. This species is only found in one location in the world, the Leigh Woods in Bristol, and it is estimated that there are only around 100 mature trees remaining. This makes it one of the rarest trees in the UK and one of the most endangered species of whitebeam.

In addition to its rarity, Leigh Woods Whitebeam is also of great scientific importance. This species is a hybrid between two other whitebeam species, the Common Whitebeam and the Welsh Whitebeam, and it is believed to have originated from a single chance seedling that appeared in Leigh Woods many centuries ago.

The Leigh Woods Whitebeam is not just important for its rarity and scientific significance, but it is also of great cultural importance. This tree has been a part of the local landscape for centuries and is deeply rooted in the history and culture of the area. It is a cherished part of the natural heritage of the region and has been enjoyed by generations of people who have lived and worked in the area.

Leigh Woods Whitebeam is a unique and valuable species that is worth protecting. Its rarity, scientific significance, and cultural importance make it one of the most important trees in the UK and a true gem of the natural world. We must work together to ensure that this species continues to thrive and that future generations can enjoy and appreciate it for years to come.

Conservation efforts for Leigh Woods Whitebeam are underway, but more needs to be done to ensure its survival. The tree is protected under UK law, and there are efforts being made to protect its habitat and prevent further deforestation. For example, the Woodland Trust is working to conserve ancient woodland and plant new trees, including Leigh Woods Whitebeams, to create new habitats for this species and other rare and threatened species.

Another important aspect of conservation is educating the public about the importance of Leigh Woods Whitebeam. Raising awareness about this species and its importance can help to inspire people to get involved in conservation efforts and make a difference in the fight to protect this tree.

Another important factor in the conservation of Leigh Woods Whitebeam is research. Scientists are studying this species to learn more about its biology, ecology, and evolution. This information can be used to inform conservation efforts and help protect this tree from threats such as pests and diseases.

Finally, it is important to note that conservation efforts for Leigh Woods Whitebeam cannot be successful without the support of the local community. It is important to involve the local community in conservation efforts and to get them involved in the fight to protect this species. By working together, we can make a real difference in the fight to conserve Leigh Woods Whitebeam and other rare and threatened species.

In conclusion, Leigh Woods Whitebeam is a species that is worth protecting. Its rarity, scientific significance, cultural importance, and beauty make it a true gem of the natural world. With the right conservation efforts, public support, and community involvement, it is possible to protect this species and ensure that it continues to thrive for generations to come.