Fagus sylvatica


The naturally large European beech is well-known as a towering deciduous tree, but it also can be shaped into a stunning hedge. The tree’s leaves change color with the passing seasons, which make it an attractive hedge in many outdoor spaces.

There are a number of immediate benefits to choosing the European Beech for your next hedge:

  • Makes a uniquely attractive hedge with heavy pruning
  • Tolerates a wider range of soils than other beeches
  • Low-branched habit makes it suitable for hedging

As a large tree, the European beech works especially well in expansive outdoor spaces.

It has an attractive upright-oval to rounded-spreading crown when left alone and can be pruned to any desired hedge style.

Native to the woodlands of central and southern Europe, this beech was brought to America by colonists in the mid-1700s and has remained a popular ornamental tree ever since.

As a low-branched beech, with a trunk ranging from 2 to 4 feet in diameter, it works especially well for hedging.

The European beech has a lovely bark that is smooth and silver-gray.

The tree’s foliage turns bronze in fall and blooms with yellow-green flowers in the early spring. The male flowers in drooping globular clusters and the female flowers in short spikes, which fruit to edible beechnuts.

USDA Hardiness Zones: 5-8
Your Hardiness Zone:
Sun/Shade: Moderate
Deer Resistance: Moderate
Growth Rate: Moderate, to 2’ per year
Mature Size: Up to 12’ height and 4’ width
Drought Tolerance: Moderate
West Coast - Sunset Heat Zones: 2 - 9 and 14 - 21; A3
Pest/Disease Issues: No major pest or disease issues. Beech scale is an occasional problem. Borers, beech bark disease, canker and powdery mildew are all possible.