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 My son moved into a new house 3 years ago and was the only  one who had a tree planted in the street.  Unfortunately we don't know the name of the tree, as his garden is small we assume it won't grow that large.  After 3 years it has grown and  now has a nice canopy and lovely dappled shade in one corner.

The problem he has with it that it seems to drop some sort of sap and his bench and slabs look dirty underneath, also he has noticed when sitting on the bench that there are a lot of bluebottles, wasps etc in the tree and underneath, I know we have flies etc in gardens but he says these seem unprecedented amounts, he's got to the point that he's thinking of having it cut down as it's really awful!! Anyone any ideas please.

If you can provide a photo it will help with identification of the tree and confirm the eventual size.  Just because the tree was planted in a small garden doesn't mean the tree will remain small.


Can you see aphids on the leaves?  They suck sap out of plants and excrete sugary fluid, called honeydew, from the other end.  This can drop on whatever is underneath, and then mould grows on it, making it look dirty.  If the tree has flowers and fruit, insects will come to feed on them.


When my daughter was at uni in Bristol she lived in a street lined by trees that dripped sap all over the cars.  Nightmare!


Thank you for your replies. Here is a photo of the tree (sorry not that clear) and a photo of a leaf with some strange little growths on it.


Looks like a Lime species of some description (Tilia sp.) ; have you ever parked your car on a street in summer lined by lime-trees ? The mess can be indescribable .


It's a lime. with nail galls. Not the cause of the drip. I wouldn't have chosen a lime for the reasons you've found and for its eventual size

Looks like Linden Gall Mite ; these just munch away all summer , not paricularly harmful but can make the tree look unsightly . (Roll on Autumn!)

PS ;- As nut says , not the cause of the sap exudation .


Thank you to all for taking the time to comment. Have looked up this tree on Wikipedia and realise this is not the sort of tree to go in a small garden or even to line streets belongs in a Parkland I think, so unfortunately it will have to go.  As I don't know anything at all about trees does anyone have any suggestions of a tree that would go well in a small garden without the problems of sap etc.  Many thanks.

If your soil is moist and slightly acidic , how about a Mountain Ash (Sorbus) ; variety of fruit colours , usually good Autumn tints , good for birds  and  relatively free of pests and diseases .


Thank you Paul B3 have looked at these and they look amazing.

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