Common Name: Common beech
Origin/Ecology: Native to central Europe to Caucasus
Habit: Large deciduous tree typically growing 50-60′, sometimes 100′, with dense, upright-oval to rounded-spreading crown.
Leaves: Ovate to elliptic, lustrous dark green leaves (to 4″ long) have wavy mostly toothless margins and prominent parallel veins. Foliage turns golden bronze in fall.
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Flowers and Fruit: Monoecious yellowish green flowers bloom in April-May, male flowers in drooping, long-stemmed globular clusters and female in short spikes. Triangular nuts enclosed by spiny bracts. Beechnuts ripen in fall and are edible.
Bark: Trunks have distinctive bark that is thin, smooth and gray.
Water Use, Soil: Deep, rich, moist but well-drained soils. Intolerant of wet, poorly drained soils.
Exposure: Full sun to part shade.
Landscape Uses: Shade tree for large lawns and parks.