New Beech Forum - Welcome! (on Oct 29, 09 changed to Fagaceae forum)

Discussion in 'Fagaceae (beeches, oaks, etc.)' started by Scion Swapper, Feb 28, 2006.

  1. Scion Swapper

    Scion Swapper Active Member

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    Hi all forum members,

    I asked Daniel Mosquin from the UBC for this Beech forum to be created/trialed. Fagus sylvatica and the other species of Fagus have over 100 cultivars, many of which are only available in Europe. There are currently no books in print which are dedicated to Beech cultivars and their descriptions/photographs. Perhaps a forum such as this will help everyone (particularly those outside of Europe) learn more about the Beech and it's many beautiful forms.

    I hope there are others here on the UBC forum that share my interest in this genus and its many cultivars, and I hope that if you do, you'll participate.

    Thanks,
    Brian
     
  2. Michael F

    Michael F Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years of Activity

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    Not to forget the very attractive species like Fagus lucida and F. japonica!
     
  3. Gomero

    Gomero Well-Known Member Maple Society 10 Years of Activity

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    I've just discovered this new forum, it's a good idea. We should also add a photo gallery as well!

    Gomero
     
  4. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Renowned Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years of Activity

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    If folks start posting photographs in quantity, yes, an offshoot photo gallery will be made available. It's easy enough to move a few dozen threads.
     
  5. 4moreaction

    4moreaction Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    hi... it just makes me wonder why all participants here rave here about the european beech... why don't you people rave about your own fagus grandifolia... surely there are lots and lots of different varietys to be found on that statly tree... ;O))... and to think of it it's even hardier tree than our european species...
     
  6. Rima

    Rima Active Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    This is a great idea - especially as I have two unusual species that I treasure, and had a very hard time finding - the F. syl. tortuosa (or torulosa) green, and the purple version (mine's almost black), being grown as bonsai.
     
  7. Scion Swapper

    Scion Swapper Active Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    4morereaction,

    You would think that there would be some cultivars for Fagus grandifolia, however that is not the case. I believe F. grandifolia is more "consistant" in form compared to F. sylvatica. We grow both species in the field as seedlings and I've search the seed beds looking for unusual forms. Fagus grandifolia all generally look the same, while F. sylvatica seedlings show a decent range in colors and leaf forms.

    I spoke with a nurseryman and plant collector who knew of a golden form of Fagus grandifolia growing in the mountains in one of the southern United States. When the nurseryman attempted to secure scion wood from the tree, he was told to leave the property at gunpoint. He suspected the property owner was a sort of nurseryman himself, likely with a crop of illegal plants. He left the property without any scion wood and never returned.

    Brian
     
  8. Michael F

    Michael F Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years of Activity

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    Only if the seed is collected from a population including numerous cultivars with differing leaf colour/shape (as is likely the case in the US, where it is only grown as an ornamental tree). Seeds collected from large areas of normal trees (e.g. a natural forest, or a forestry plantation of the species) yield all normal seedlings.

    The only reason I can see that F. sylvatica has so many variants is that it has been subject to several hundred years history of searching for chance variants, while F. grandifolia hasn't.
     
  9. Scion Swapper

    Scion Swapper Active Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    Micheal F,

    True, I'm sure your right and I actually thought about that too. But aren't there areas where 'Tortuosa' forms grow wild in natural stands in Europe? That would suggest that there are some regional variants. For sure, hundreds of years of selection, cloning, cross-pollinating, etc, have diversified the species. This is likely true for Acer palmatum as well, as they have been cultivated for centuries, possibly longer. Fagus grandifolia is a "baby" when compared to the more popularly cultivated trees around the world.

    Actually all or nearly all seed we grow in the of Fagus sylvatica is actually from Europe, not from cultivars in the US. It is very hard to find a decent stand of viable seeds in the US from cultivated trees of Fagus sylvatica -- nearly always hollow. The variation in F. sylvatica beds, none-the-less is likely still because of the existence/selection, of purple, weeping, cutleaf forms, etc in Europe over the last couple hundred years..

    Another reason Fagus grandifolia hasn't been extensively grown and evaluted on a wholesale scale is because the viability of Fagus grandifolia seed is very poor, limiting its availability for cultivation (and evaluation). A certain weavel finds its way into the embryo before the seeds fall from the tree, and seeding age/size of trees are so large that you can only collect from the ground after the damage has been done. We've collected trash can fulls of seed from the ground beneath specimen trees only to find a small pile of seeds (maybe 2lbs./1kg) worth of viable seed once the seed was floated for hollows. Frustrating species of Fagus, but beautiful.

    Brian
     
  10. 4moreaction

    4moreaction Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    it's tru that it's commonly found in some areas this 'tortuosa' form... still it's also true that long collecting of differing forms from nature has given a good genepool for evermore new forms appearing... =O)... Still I insist that with more interest towards F.grandifolia you should be able in longterm to produce some interesting seedlings!

    What comes to the amont of fertile seeds the european beech can be as notorius in producing empty shells... plus that there are plenty of 'critters' that sees the seed as a delicacy...so even there one will end up with empty shells even here in europe...

    I recently ordered some seeds of Fagus grandifolia from U.S. of A and I think that I got pretty good sprouting on those, about 90%... and it seems that I ended up with one red leaved plant also... so maybe I just lucky...or there should be more of those who are inspired by the beautiful north-american beech...
     
  11. TheNativeGarden

    TheNativeGarden Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    Dear Scion Swapper,

    So glad to stumble upon your posts! Currently hunting for appropriate successor to a very beloved Fagus sylvatica in our park. We are an Historic Olmsted designed park, however this was not on orig. Olmsted planting plans/lists as it pre-dates park creation in 1920's and 30's. Difficult to determine exact cultivar, tree approx. 120yo, which would normally not be end of life...but due to large ulcer (among other ailments) our tree will not see many more springs. Taking cuttings this week. Have more info - but for now, is it possible (since I think you and I are both in Jersey) for us to exchange more info off forum? Thanks.
     
  12. Poetry to Burn

    Poetry to Burn Active Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    Great idea.

    I do love the beeches. I've stalked them all over the map got them home and killed them.
    Cultural info might slow the slaughter. I am left with two cultivars one is the green weeping form. Very slow growing for me. Been in a pot about 5 years. It is a handsome plant. The other is the so caller tri colored. It's growing unhappily in Cape May, NJ. I think it resents the fast drainage and the bright sunshine and wind and probably isn't keen on the toasty z7 climate either. It's a goner if it doesn't shape up this season.
     
  13. Liz

    Liz Well-Known Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    Excuse my ignorance on this but does this also include what we call here "Copper Beech" the one with the purple coloured leaves. If so years ago raked autumn leaves used to be tossed under the rhodos and every year there would be lots of seedlings both green and dark. They would be potted up and sold down the track. They do very well here there are a couple of beautiful ones down the road 100+ years old. It would take two people to put their arms around the trunk. Have attached a phote of, I think,green ones climbing up a gorge in Unterwasser Switzerland. At least when I saw them they were green and looked like beech trees but very thin and slender and tall.

    Liz
     

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    Last edited: Apr 25, 2009
  14. TheNativeGarden

    TheNativeGarden Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    They are beautiful Liz, thanks for posting. I cannot ID based on the photo... but would be hard even close up considering the variants within species and quantity of cultivars. Absolutely love both American and European Beech too. Often the problem with babies from seed is the fact that most of the specimen Beech we encounter in public sites...or the ones that make us stop and say, "Wow!" - started life as grafted specimens.

    Depending on tree type, and whether it is a grafted specimen...starting a new true-to-form tree has very specific propagation techniques. Often 'seed', suckers, or volunteers such as you encountered w/ autumn leaves do not produce desired characteristics.

    This is especially critical when you have a public responsibility within an Historic Park to replace a 120yo treasured tree! Big load on our shoulders...and the fact that it is soooo slow to mature, makes the initial selection process critical. Most of us will not be around when the new one finally displays mature form.

    Let me try to post some pics of our old boy...of course these are April photos (no leaf-out yet) and remember it is under great distress.

    Gentle reminder to all: Files & Photos contained herein are the exclusive property of the VPC. Please do not reproduce, edit or publish without contacting us for express permission. Thankyou.
     

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  15. Blake09

    Blake09 Active Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    This is one of my favorite beeches :)))))))
     

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  16. TheNativeGarden

    TheNativeGarden Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    Wow! Literally and figuratively...A Beech on the Beach. Thanks for sharing - love what looks to be form of pendula or similar in first pic. And the structure of trunk and branches are what inspired an entire series I took of a stunning 'naked' Beech.
     
  17. Blake09

    Blake09 Active Member

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome!

    I like to call it driftwod beech and as i said it is one of my favorite beeches :)))))))) and thanks, the trees look like there 100 yers old or older and there like that all year round :))))))))
     
  18. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Renowned Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years of Activity

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    Re: New Beech Forum - Welcome! (on Oct 29, 09 changed to Fagaceae forum)

    Well, this forum has a bit lower volume of posting than what I'd like to sustain it as only a forum dedicated to the genus Fagus, so I'm expanding its scope to include all members of the beech family, including oaks, stone oaks and chestnuts.

    As a way to possibly split up the forum again one day if the volume picks up, it'd be handy if people used the thread prefixes when posting new threads -- it's very easy for me to move threads around by sorting on these.
     
  19. M. D. Vaden

    M. D. Vaden Active Member 10 Years of Activity

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    For the more part, I'm no expert on most varieties. But the genus Fagus, like species sylvatica, is one of my favorite trees. In many cases, its what I'm comparing other trees to. Like my top favorite, black tupelo, I compare to beech as well. I describe tupelo as having as good a form as beech and color that can match many sweet gum.

    When we moved to our new home location two summers ago, the first trees we planted were 3 purple beech.

    It just came back to me while typing this, some customers about 7 years ago, who were committed to buying a variety 'Red Obelisk'. So I gave them the nurseryguide.com website and told them to give a ring when they saw the variety become available. I should go back there this year 2010 and see what they look like. I've been by there since two times, but only in winter.
     

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