Beech Hedge Guide (Your Questions Answered)

Copper Beech Hedge

One of the most glorious autumnal hedgeplants, let’s big up the Beech!


  • Genus: Fagus
  • Most common variety: 
(fagus sylvatica)
  • Other popular varieties: 
  • What Are Beech Flowers Like?

    Beech doesn’t have a flower in the strictest sense, but its seed pods appear in the Autumn.

    Beech Nuts by Anja Bagus on Pixabay
    Beech Nut Shells

    What Are Beech Hedge Fruits Like?

    Beech nuts are covered with a spiky outer shell. Once peeled, a pod usually reveals two three-sided nuts which can be eaten as they come, but should be cooked to remove their toxicity if you plan to use a lot of them.

    How Do I Prune A Beech Hedge?

    To get the most enjoyment from your Beech hedge, a careful trim in August will maintain your desired shape while allowing the plant to regrow leaves that will change colour as they die in the Autumn, but remain on the plant until the Spring.

    How Do I Propagate A Beech Hedge?

    Beech can be propagated by seed – simply collect the seed pods and plant them into the soil in the autumn. You can grow them as seedlings if you wish, and plant them in the Spring – Beech is a fast growing seed and therefore quite a rewarding plant to pot.

    How Do I Plant A Beech Hedge?

    If growing from seed, a solution that is highly recommended, you should allow the seedlings to grow to a height of around 2 feet before planting in a permanent position. According to the Royal Horticultural Society, by lifting and replanting saplings that have been growing for two seasons, the disturbance to the root system will promote a thicker network of roots and therefore a more robust plant.

    What Are The Main Threats For A Beech Hedge?

    The biggest threat is Beech Bark Disease, which is caused when the Beech Scale Insect invades a plant and, as a consquence of their feeding, a fungal attack causes cankers and lesions. These can lead to the slow death of the tree canopy over time, while the continued feeding by the invasive insects can cause the wood to become brittle and snap.


    Beech Bark Disease can be identified initially by red spots in the dark, an indication that the fungus is taking hold.

    Concerted efforts to manage the problem have limited the spread of the disease, however if your beech hedge is beset, you should try to cleanse the affected area with power washing, or consider using an insecticide.

    It is worth noting that Beech Bark Disease is more common in forest and woodlands than in suburban hedgerows, where you are more likely to experience the occasional Aphid attack. However, knowledge is power and if you like Beech like we like Beech, you should care for it in all it’s forms.

    Fun Facts About Beech

    Mr X

    I'm Jamie and I started TrimHedge to learn about hedge trimming and topiary and share my findings with you. I enjoy the sight of well formed foliage and enjoy helping you keep your hedges in good shape and your borders in order. To find out more about me, visit my About Page.

    Recent Posts