Hornbeam is very adaptable to soil types. It is also tolerant of high ground water and short periods of flooding. However, its roots won’t cope with waterlogged ground.


Hornbeam trees are shade tolerant and withstand heat and summer droughts if the soil is moist enough.

Annual Growth Rate

35-40cm per year. Hornbeam tends to be slow growing when young but speed up later.


Hornbeam is not demanding and will tolerate all pH soils. It is however sensitive to salt air.

Root Structure

Hornbeam has an intense and dense cordate root system, with a high proportion of fibrous roots in the topsoil layer. The roots are sensitive to compaction and floods.


Hornbeam is undemanding and can be used in almost any location. Their tolerance of hard cutting means they can be used in small gardens.

Annual Pruning

The exceptional Hornbeam can be pruned to almost any shape, or simply left to grow naturally. Cutting or trimming can be carried out any time of the year.


When grown as a stand alone specimen tree, the hornbeam will form a broad, rounded crown with a height of up to 25 metres tall and a spread of up to 15 metres wide.

The Hornbeam is a medium size tree that will reach up to 25 metres tall with a spread of up to 12 metres wide in maturity. The crown is conical in shape when young, then ovoid to round later.

In bye gone days the hardwood of the Hornbeam tree was used to make items that required durability. The old English words horn meant hard and beam, tree.

Hornbeam has an excellent tolerance to being cut and regenerates with ease. Hornbeam makes great hedges and is also used to create many shapes including arches, cubes, pyramids and too many other designs to mention.

When grown and maintained as a formal hedge the dead brown leaves of Hornbeam remain on the hedge during the winter months, just like Beech hedges do.

When the leaves finally fall, they rot quickly and provide good nutrient for the soil.

Price & Availability


Spring - Summer

Mature Tree


60-65cm girth 6.5m tall

70-75cm girth 7m tall

80-85cm girth 8m tall

90-100cm girth 10m tall

100+cm girth

Semi-Mature Tree


18-20cm girth 4m tall

25-30cm girth 4.5m tall

35-40cm girth 5m tall

45-50cm girth 5m tall

55-60cm girth 5.5m tall

Young Tree


10-12cm girth 2m tall

14-16cm girth 2.2m tall

16-18cm girth 2.5m tall

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