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FAGUS sylvatica 'Quercifolia'

Image of Fagus sylvatica 'Quercifolia'

Mark A. Miller

Family

Fagaceae

Botanical Name

FAGUS sylvatica 'Quercifolia'

Plant Common Name

European Beech, Oak-leaved European Beech

General Description

Cherished for its smooth gray bark, elegant deciduous foliage, stately habit, and adaptability, European beech has long been a garden favorite on its native continent and elsewhere. Introduced in the nineteenth century, the cultivar 'Quercifolia' has leaves that are lobed in somewhat oak-like fashion. Shimmering golden-green in spring, they become dark green in summer and yellow, orange and bronze in fall. Inconspicuous flowers in spring give rise to bristly green capsules that ripen to tan in late summer and fall. They contain one to three edible nuts that are prized by wildlife. Raw nuts are inedible to humans. This cultivar grows slowly into a small to medium-sized low-branched tree. It is one of several lobed-leaved cultivars, which are often confused in commerce.

Tough and reliable, European beech performs best in moist, well-drained, acidic to alkaline soil in full sun. Established trees tolerate some drought. With its compact habit and textured foliage, 'Quercifolia' makes an excellent specimen for residential gardens. It also works well for bonsai.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 4

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    4 - 7

  • Sunset Zone

    A3, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Tree

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    40'-60' / 12.2m - 18.3m

  • Width

    35'-90' / 10.7m - 27.4m

  • Bloom Time

    Early Spring, Spring

  • Native To

    Europe

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam

  • Tolerances

    Drought

  • Growth Rate

    Slow

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Oval/Rounded

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Insignificant

  • Flower Color

    Yellow Green

  • Fruit Color

    Brown

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Lime Green, Sea Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Gold, Copper, Bronze

  • Bark Color

    Gray, Silver, Slate Gray

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    Yes

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Feature Plant, Shade Trees

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Birds

  • Self-Sowing

    No