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Weeping Purple Beech Fagus sylvatica purpurea pendula

Description & features

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Product description

FAGUS SYLVATICA PURPUREA PENDULA – Weeping Beech

Characteristics

Weeping Purple Beech is a slow growing mushroom shaped tree.  It rarely is taller than 5m (15ft) and is as wide.

The leaves are a dark red-brown and appear in early May.  It has a certain novelty value as it appears when established as a dark ball shape.

Where to grow

Beech can be difficult to establish. Unlike most trees, it is only after bud burst that root growth, for that year, begins. The first roots to appear are very thin (with a diameter of less than 0.5 mm). Later, after a wave of above ground growth, thicker roots grow in a steady fashion.

They also prefer humus rich, light or medium soils and will not tolerate waterlogged root zones for any length of time.  However during the establishment phase their root systems must not be allowed to dry out and regular watering is needed.  This balance is crucial to planting success.

Did you know?

This is one of the few beeches that can be accomodated in a small garden.  Most fagus species will grow to be far too large.

 

Features

Mature height
Very Small up to 5 metres
Spread
5-10 metres
Shape / habit
Weeping
Growth rate
Very Slow
Soil type
Chalk/Limestone
Light sandy
Sun levels
Full sun
Partial shade
Difficulty / hard to grow
Hard
Evergreen / Deciduous
Deciduous
Season of interest
Winter
Summer
Autumn colour
Copper
Orange
Leaf
Purple/Red
Foliage
Dense
Uses
Parkland Tree
Garden Tree
Small garden Tree
City/Urban Sites

Features

Mature height
Very Small up to 5 metres
Spread
5-10 metres
Shape / habit
Weeping
Growth rate
Very Slow
Soil type
Chalk/Limestone
Light sandy
Sun levels
Full sun
Partial shade
Difficulty / hard to grow
Hard
Evergreen / Deciduous
Deciduous
Season of interest
Winter
Summer
Autumn colour
Copper
Orange
Leaf
Purple/Red
Foliage
Dense
Uses
Parkland Tree
Garden Tree
Small garden Tree
City/Urban Sites

Aftercare

Pruning Fagus sylvatica Purpurea Pendula

Fagus sylvatica Purpurea Pendula is a small cultivar of purple beech. Prune any upright growth that spoils the weeping form. Remove low growing stems from the trunk, and stems that trail to the ground should also be shortened. Foliage on new shoots may revert to plain green; where possible remove these stems fully to retain the purple colour.

What time of year is best for pruning? Prune in winter when the tree is dormant. Pruning is possible in summer if necessary.

 

For the continued healthy growth of your trees, shrubs or hedging it is vital that you follow the advice below.

Watering

The main reason that plants die within 12 months of having been planted is lack of water.  It is essential throughout the spring and summer, to give a heavy enough watering to enable the water to penetrate right down to the deepest root level of the tree.  In hot dry spells give the equivalent of 2 bucketfuls every three days.

Weed Control

One of the most common causes of lack of water is competition from grass.  When trees are first establishing, the grass roots would be at the same level as the tree roots and are far more efficient at taking up water and thus choke the tree.  It is vital for 3 years after planting that your tree or hedge has a circle or strip one  metre wide completely free of grass.  The way to eliminate grass in order of effectiveness is:

  1. Spray off the grass with a glyphosate based weed killer such as Roundup.  Apply each year for the first 3 years.  It is best applied when the tree is dormant as it is absorbed through green leaves and kills the plant off at the roots.
  2. Firmly fit a mulch mat around the base of the tree by tucking the edges into the soil and put a thick layer of bark mulch on top of this.  This can be done after the initial spraying with glyphosate and should avoid the need for further spraying.

Mowing or strimming is NOT an answer to the problem.  Each time you mow, the grass will grow back more vigorously and strimming invariably leads to lacerated trunks.

Staking

If trees are not correctly secured they will rock in the planting pit. Roots not firmly in contact with the soil are unable to take up moisture and nutrients, resulting in die back or death of the tree.  Check, particularly after windy weather, that stakes are still solidly in the ground keeping the base of the trunk firm.  The purpose of the stakes is to anchor the roots.   Flexing in the wind, higher up the trunk, is not necessarily a problem if the roots are firm.

Bellow is list of the correct system to use to secure your trees.

  • 40/60, 60/80, 80/100 whips - Unless rabbit/deer problem no need to stake.
  • 100/125, 125/150  1.2m Cane and Easi tie.
  • 150/175  1.2m square stake and a buckle tie and spacer.
  • 175/250, 6/8, 8/10 15L 1.65 Tree stake and a buckle tie and spacer.
  • All larger trees. 2 x 1.65 Tree stake and cross rail with 38mm cushion spacer and 1m of 38mm strapping.

Ties

Always use our recommended tree ties or strapping.  These are designed and manufactured with the correct amount of give to hold the tree firm without strangling it. They should be checked at the end of each growing season for adjustment as the trunk thickens.  Non proprietary materials such as baler twine will cut into the bark and should not be used.

Protection from Animal Damage

Rabbits, deer, sheep, cattle and horses can all potentially damage trees.  Ask us for advice on the most appropriate guards for your trees or hedge.  Squirrels are also a terrible pest when trees get to about 20ft tall but there is no protection available.


Comments

By John Longden on 01/02/2016

Fagus sylvatica purea pendula,  is it bare root or container, and if both which do you recommend at this time of year.

By Simon on 05/02/2016

Dear John,

We only supply Fagus sylvatica Purpurea Pendula in containers. These can be planted at any time of year.

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