Unlike beech ( Fagus sylvatica), which can prove difficult on wet clay soils, hornbeam ( Carpinus betulus) is tolerant of most soils, and also resistant to sea winds. Unlike beech, which holds on to its leaves throughout winter, hornbeam leaves fall in autumn to create a most beautiful filigree branch silhouette for a winter hedge. It will form precisely the type of silhouette you want in winter, especially if it’s given a good prune in late summer. And you don’t have to worry about clearing up leaves in spring, as by then the leaves have already gone. AGM.
Height 10m. Origin Europe, Turkey, Iran. Conditions Moist but well-drained soil; full sun, part shade. Hardiness RHS H7, USDA 4a-8b. Season of interest Year round.