Also known as
Common Hornbeam, European Hornbeam, Ironwood, Horn Beech, Horse Beech, Hurst Beech, White Beech, Yoke Elm, Charmille
Hornbeam (Carpinus betulus) - geograph.org.uk - 183626 by Penny Mayes (CC BY-SA 2.0)
30 years to reach maturity
This plant has no fragrance
More images of Hornbeam
Carpinus betulus is also known by a few common names, including horn beech, horse beech, common hornbeam, European hornbeam and most often just hornbeam. This species is in the birch family, Betulaceae and it is native to the UK. The bark is pale grey in colour, with vertical markings and develops a ridged texture with age. The trunk may twist and branches are hairy and more of a brown-grey colour. Leaf buds are short and curve slightly at the tip. Leaves are oval in shape, with pointed tips and they are toothed along the margins, they also have a furrowed texture, appearing pleated. This deciduous species displays impressive autumn colouration, the leaves turning a bright golden-yellow to orange colour before they fall. Flowers are enclosed within catkin structures, adapted for wind pollination and this plant is termed monoecious and thus produces individual male and female catkins on the same tree. Female catkins develop into papery, winged fruits, these are termed samaras and they are green in colour, turning brown with age as they dry out. The winged fruits have three lobes and they contain a small nut seed, measuring approximately 0.3-0.6cm long.
How to propagate Hornbeam
Best sown outside as soon as ripe, in autumn, germination can take up to 18 months.
May be propagated through grafting in the winter.
Softwood cuttings may be taken in early summer.
The cultivars by budding in late summer.
Special features of Hornbeam
Other uses of Hornbeam
Specimen, banks, hedging, lawn
Native British Trees
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