General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Tree
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Full Sun to Partial Shade
Partial or Dappled Shade
Partial Shade to Full Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Dry Mesic
Soil pH Preferences: Moderately acid (5.6 – 6.0)
Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 3 -40 °C (-40 °F) to -37.2 °C (-35)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 9a
Plant Height: 50 - 120 feet
Plant Spread: 40 - 60 feet
Leaves: Good fall color
Unusual foliage color
Fruit: Edible to birds
Flowers: Inconspicuous
Flower Time: Spring
Uses: Shade Tree
Edible Parts: Fruit
Dynamic Accumulator: K (Potassium)
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Pollinators: Wind
Containers: Not suitable for containers
Miscellaneous: Monoecious
Conservation status: Least Concern (LC)

Conservation status:
Conservation status: Least Concern
Common names
  • American Beech
  • North American Beech
Botanical names
  • Accepted: Fagus grandifolia
  • Synonym: Fagus americana

  • Posted by plantladylin (Sebastian, Florida - Zone 10a) on Mar 3, 2012 4:13 PM concerning plant:
    The American Beech is a native North American tree that can attain heights to 120', with smooth, silver-gray bark and older bark that resembles elephant skin. It is a strong hardwood tree with simple alternate 2"- 4" leaves that are borne on a short petiole. The leaves are dark green on top with a light green reverse side. The tree foliage is quite showy in the fall with it's copper to yellow color. The American Beech forms large surface roots, is moderately drought tolerant once established and is resistant to pests and disease. The beech nuts are edible to birds and humans.
  • Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Dec 7, 2017 2:23 PM concerning plant:
    It is a magnificent large tree that is one of the climax forest trees of the eastern forests from Nova Scotia and far southeast Canada down to northwest Florida to far eastern Texas, Arkansas, southeast Missouri and southern Illinois through most of Indiana, northeast Wisconsin and upper Michigan and back to Canada. It is a slow growing tree starting out growing about 1 foot/year and lives about 200 to 300 years. It does not have a taproot, but a wide system of mostly shallow roots. It is very sensitive to any ground disturbance; therefore, any nearby construction or changing the environment around the tree from forest to lawn is often deadly for the tree. Its nuts are of very high value to birds and mammals and the foliage supports a good number of beneficial insects. It needs a good quality soil that is usually moist, and it needs acid pH. I once saw an American and a European Beech growing right together on the campus of the University of Illinois, both doing well, where the pH had to be about 7.0 that is typical of east central IL. It is sold by a few large, diverse nurseries and native plant nurseries and can be a good yard tree.
  • Posted by Sharon (Calvert City, KY - Zone 7a) on Dec 3, 2011 1:17 AM concerning plant:
    The American beech bark and leaves have astringent and antiseptic properties that account for whatever medicinal effectiveness the plant was claimed to have in the past. Today it's valued chiefly for its wood; it's used in flooring, furniture, crates and tool handles.
  • Posted by Mindy03 (Delta KY) on Oct 20, 2011 5:48 PM concerning plant:
    Honey bees get pollen and honeydew from this plant

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