Common Hornbeam (Carpinus betulus)

Common names:
Give a thumbs up Common Hornbeam
Give a thumbs up Hornbeam
Give a thumbs up European Hornbeam

General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Tree
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Full Sun to Partial Shade
Partial or Dappled Shade
Partial Shade to Full Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Moderately acid (5.6 – 6.0)
Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Neutral (6.6 – 7.3)
Slightly alkaline (7.4 – 7.8)
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 5a -28.9 °C (-20 °F) to -26.1 °C (-15 °F)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 7b
Plant Height: 25 to 80 feet, usually about 25 to 35 feet in landscapes
Plant Spread: 30 to 60 feet, usually about 25 to 30 feet in landscapes
Leaves: Deciduous
Fruit: Other: a ribbed nutlet with a large, leafy bract attached
Fruiting Time: Late summer or early fall
Flowers: Inconspicuous
Other: catkins
Flower Color: Other: yellowish
Flower Time: Spring
Suitable Locations: Street Tree
Uses: Shade Tree
Resistances: Deer Resistant
Rabbit Resistant
Pollinators: Wind
Miscellaneous: Monoecious


London's Green ParksLondon's Green Parks
April 17, 2010

People think of London as a sprawling mass of concrete or lots of old ancient buildings with an untold history, but it is a lot more than that. Around London is the protected 'Green Belt' and in London itself there are many green spaces; from the giant Royal Parks, Botanic Gardens, privately owned parks to more modest parks, then the Victorian Parks, down to the much used Municipal\Council Parks; all beautiful and each one designed and kept for a different use and reason.

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Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Aug 1, 2018 10:00 AM

The European Hornbeam is native to most of Europe and parts of Asia Minor. It is not common in the USA, but one can find a few specimens in and around some towns at estates, well-to-do neighbourhoods, city parks, office parks, and college campuses. I don't know of it having escaped cultivation in the US. It is a handsome, high quality smaller tree like its sister the American Hornbeam. Its leaves are darker and of thicker texture than the American species and its smooth, gray bark is also darker. Like most European woody plants, its autumn colour is not as excellent as the American species, (or Asian species also), being greenish-yellow to a good yellow. It grows about 1 to 1.5 feet/year and lives about 100 to 150 years. It is a good quality, handsome smaller tree where a few are sold by some larger, diverse, conventional nurseries. usually only planted by landscape architects and designers that know of it. The European species is more adaptable to more landscapes than the American species. The Columnar European Hornbeam (C. betulus 'Fastigiata' is being planted a fair amount onto city parkways. I prefer the American species as it is native in the US and it has prettier, more muscular bark and fall colour.

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Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
TREE ID by Frillylily Nov 16, 2018 4:36 PM 5
Beeches and hornbeams by Arico Nov 25, 2018 8:13 AM 9
Signs of Spring ! by janwax May 5, 2018 5:27 PM 251
Is this a birch? What Cultivar? by zwei7 Dec 25, 2017 8:19 PM 5
Autumn leaves ID by Alexjoy Nov 19, 2016 6:49 PM 10

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