American Beech, Grandiflora Beech
|Beech's common name comes from a Saxon word meaning book. The smooth, light gray bark was once used like paper, and the wood used to make tablets. The trees' lofty, rounded crowns reach 50 to 100 feet tall and wide. Their shade is so dense that other plants cannot grow beneath them. Spring flowers are followed by triangular nuts with edible kernels that birds enjoy. In autumn, leaves turn amber to bronze. Prefers acid soil, and will not tolerate salt. Prune in summer and early fall to shape and to remove dead limbs and basal sprouts. Let trees' own fallen leaves act as mulch, or mulch within dripline to protect shallow roots and maintain cool moist soil. Generally pest-free, they are prone to Beech scale and, in the Northeast, a fungus called Nectria. Aphids cause some dripping honeydew.
The leaves start out a light bluish gray on young slender stems. They turn dark green in summer and golden bronze in fall, lasting into winter on young trees or on the lower limbs of mature trees.
Attributes - Fagus grandifolia
Plant Type: Tree
Height: 50 ft. to 70 ft.
Width: 70 ft.
Sunlight: Full Sun, Partial Sun
Climate: Zones 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
Notes: Thrives in Acid Soil. Low Maintenance.
Fagus sylvatica, Fagus sylvatica 'Atropunicea', Fagus sylvatica 'Pendula'