Carpinus betulus


Witch Hazel; Hornbeam

This deciduous and dioecious tree can grow to a height of 25 metres with a spread of 5-10 metres. The bark is pale grey and smooth. Its leaves are ovate, green and alternate with prominent veins, turning yellow in autumn. Inconspicuous male flowers appear in autumn, forming catkins by spring when the female catkins appear. Fruit are enclosed in small cones.


Ornamental tree for larger gardens and parks.


Hornbeam will grow in a range of soils provided they are well drained. It will do best in full sun, although it can tolerate shade. It can be pruned or used as a hedge plant. It is drought and frost resistant and can be propagated from seed or by layering.


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Video: ‘Identifying Trees and Shrubs’ produced by Australian Correspondence Schools is available through Landscape Design and Home Garden Expert courses are available through Australian Correspondence Schools, see

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