Tree & Hedge Company

Copper Beech

Fagus sylvatica ‘Purpurea’

A traditional native hedge valued for its decorative purple leaves which turn copper in autumn and remain on the hedge throughout the winter months providing year-round interest and privacy screening.

Soil types
Well-drained chalk soil, sandy soil or loam soil
Location
Full sun to shade
Annual growth rate
Average 40-50cm
Strengths
Winter leaf retention, tolerates pruning
Restrictions
Avoid planting in heavy clay or acidic soil
pH
Mildly acidic to alkaline, calcareous soils
Situations
Formal and privacy hedges High screen hedges
Roots
Dense wide spreading roots sensitive to compaction
Formal hedge pruning
Twice during the growing season and always at the end of summer
Informal hedge pruning
August
Animals
Suitable for livestock or horse enclosures

Easily recognized by its beautiful purple leaves which appear in April, usually starting out as new, shiny wavy red then maturing to purple. The leaves turn reddish-brown in autumn as the hedge enters its dormant winter phase. During the winter months the dead leaves hold onto the branches and remain on the hedge through to the spring providing all year-round privacy like an evergreen hedge does.

Copper beech make excellent formal garden hedges and privacy screens. It can be planted in full sun or partial shade and its preference is moist, but well-drained soil. However, heavy clays soils or locations subject to prolonged periods of waterlogging are best avoided.