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Green Beech, Fagus sylvatica, is probably the most popular non-evergeen garden hedge plant. Clipped beech hedges hold onto their autumn leaves through the winter. Beech is suitable for any well drained soil.
Green Beech can be grown as a hedge of any height: it will reach 35 metres if it grows freely as a tree.
The plants on this page are young saplings, ideal for planting as hedging or in woodland projects. You can buy the largest sizes of bareroot beech in discounted packs of 50 plants.
You can buy larger Green Beech trees here. You can also buy copper beech plants.
Beech hedge plants are delivered bareroot during winter (Nov-March) and pot-grown year round. Bareroot Green Beech saplings are cheaper than pot grown plants.
Choosing a size: When you are ordering Beech plants for a hedge, we generally recommend that you use plants that are graded at 40/60cms or 60/80cms. They are cheaper than large plants, easier to handle and they will establish well in poor conditions. Use larger plants when you need a tall hedge quickly, or if you are going to let them grow into trees. All our hedge plants are measured by their height in centimetres above the ground (the roots aren't measured).
Spacing a Green Beech hedge:
Plant Green Beech hedging at 3 plants per metre, 33cms apart.
You can also plant Green Beech at 5 plants per metre in a staggered double row, with 33 cms between each plant and 40cms between the rows.
General description of Green Beech plants:
Beech leaves are lush and bright green in spring, darkening as summer wears on. By clipping a mature beech hedge in midsummer, you will help it to hold onto its autumn leaves during winter, which gives you the seasonal interest of a deciduous hedge with the privacy of an evergreen.
The mostly smooth, sometimes rippled bark is a shade of elephant grey.
Mature beech hedges can become very wide, which looks impressive and improves their ability to slow down the wind and muffle sound from a busy road.
History & uses of Fagus sylvatica
The highest beech hedge is in Scotland, in a place called Meikleour. It is 100 feet tall in places. Mature beech trees produce small nuts, called mast, which are a good feed for pigs and deer but not horses. They are edible to humans, but they taste bitter. The oil of mast was used for cooking and lamps. Beech timber is used for indoor furniture and makes very good firewood, which can be used to smoke food. The largest beech tree on record was 46 metres tall.
Beech is a European tree that is not considered to be strictly native to Britain. It was probably brought here by stone age humans, after the Channel had formed and cut Britain off from the mainland. Native or not, Beech woodland covers about 80,000 hectares of Great Britain.
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