Fagus or Beech trees are popular for their attractive dense foliage that comes in colours from bright lime green through to rich dark purple. Beech trees also have a wonderful elegant shape, so we offer them in a variety of forms including upright, weeping and rounded.
Choosing & Growing Beech Trees
Fagus, to use its Latin name, is a genus of deciduous trees. Fagus sylvatica (European beech) is a popular choice for ornamental trees, due to the range of size, form and foliage colours in the different cultivars. For a very small Beech tree, consider 'Purpurea Pendula' or for a grand appearance consider the taller Beech varieties or even pleached Beech trees.
The leaf canopy casts an attractive but dense shade so only plants tolerant of full shade will grow at the base of beech trees. Beech trees are popular for hedging and for avenue planting, especially in urban settings where they create an attractive shaded passage. Beech trees are also favoured for attracting wildlife such as birds, squirrels and butterflies. They grow in a range of soil types, except for waterlogged soils.
Interesting Facts about Beech Trees
- Beech trees are monoecious, meaning that their male and female reproductive parts are on the same plant. The male flowers are wind pollinating catkins.
- Fagus trees produce edible nuts, called beechmast or beechnuts, however they are very bitter. Some say that the Neolithic tribes introduced beech trees to Europe because of the edible nuts.
- The bark of Beech trees is very thin and quite delicate. As it does not have the ability to heal itself, markings and carvings will remain in the bark for many years. Beech trees are the likely recipient of initials and other forms of graffiti.
- The longest and tallest hedge in the world is made from Beech trees. The Meikleour Beech hedge in Scotland was planted in 1745 and can be seen year round on the A93 Perth-Blairgowrie road.
- Model is a textile used in clothing and bedding that is formed with the cellulose from pulped Beech wood.
- The light-coloured wood is used for flooring and furniture.
- Beech wood also makes good firewood and it is used to smoke various meats and cheeses.