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Hornbeam: the most attractive plant species

Hornbeam: the most attractive plant species

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Hornbeam (CARPINUS) - deciduous tree or, less commonly, a shrub belonging to the Birch family. In the Northern Hemisphere, over 30 species grow in the temperate zone, all of which are ornamental.

Hornbeam is a beautiful plant

The hornbeam has very hard wood and strong shoots. Dark green leaves are arranged alternately, pubescent below. Flowers are divided by sex, do not have a perianth. Fruits are ovate, oblate, oblong-ribbed.

The hornbeam tolerates a haircut. It is used in the formation of large hedges, for decorating parks, gardens. It looks beautiful, thanks to the dark green foliage, mosaic located with large light green fruit.

The hornbeam grows slowly. Faster growth occurs on rich enough moistened soils, with the presence of lime. He does not like acidic soils, waterlogging. It rarely gives root offspring, and perennial shoots are usually rich. In the temperate zone, it does not suffer from frosts, it is practically not damaged by pests.

Hornbeam is propagated, according to information, layering, cuttings, seeds. If the seeds are sown in the spring, then stratify before that.

Common types of hornbeam

Common hornbeam

Common hornbeam (Сarpinus betulus L) can be found in Europe, Belarus, the Baltic states, Ukraine, the Caucasus, and the mountainous Crimea. Distributed on the slopes of the mountains in mixed forests with oak and beech.

The common hornbeam is a very beautiful tree 25 m high, its crown is compact, low, cylindrical, the bark is smooth, silver-gray. Trunks are often angular, ribbed, smooth above, below with deep cracks.

Young shoots have a silky edge, in an adult tree, the branches are bare, shiny, with brown bark and white lentils. Leaflets are oval, pointed, veins protruding, corrugated from veins.

The top of the foliage is dark green, in the autumn they are painted in colors from lemon yellow to dark purple.

Flowers appear at the same time as the leaves are blooming. Men's flowers are earrings up to 6 cm long. Women's earrings are compact, short. When the fruit ripens, the earrings become longer - up to 15 cm, they consist of many dry bracts of three-lobed wrappers, fused with nuts - ribbed, brown-gray, shiny, small in size. The hornbeam lives about 100 years.

The hornbeam is a shade-tolerant plant; it is not too picky about the composition of the soil and its moisture, it is winter-hardy enough.

It is usually propagated by seeds, which are stratified before sowing in 2 stages:

  • at a temperature of 200C for 15-60 days;
  • at temperatures up to 100С 90-12- days.

It is also possible to plant cuttings, their rooting is about 55%. Seeds remain viable for up to 3 years. Store them in tightly sealed containers, paper bags in a dry room without heating or a refrigerator.

This type of hornbeam is a wonderful plant for decoration. It is widely used in forest parks, parks, gardens. Hornbeam hedges look beautiful. The tree is decorative in single plantings and in group. The hornbeam is one of the species of trees that very effectively reduces the noise of the city. In addition, its popularity in decoration is promoted by the feature of slowly growing and retaining for a long time the shape of the crown, which was attached when cropping.

The common hornbeam has several decorative forms:

  • pyramidal (upright tree with a narrow pyramidal crown);
  • columnar (the crown is narrower than that of the pyramidal hornbeam);
  • weeping (branches of the tree are thin, drooping);
  • carved (leaves in this form of a hornbeam are narrow, deeply lobed);
  • oak-leaved (leaves are small, wide-toothed, deep-lobed);
  • purple (the leaves are purple at first, then green).

Photo gallery

Grab Carolinsky

Karolinsky hornbeam (Сarpinus caroliniana Walter) can be seen in eastern North America, along river banks, on the outskirts of swamps. The tree is usually 5-6 m tall, sometimes grows up to 12 m. After freezing, it grows bushy. It blooms in May, the fruits ripen by the end of September. Seeds have a fairly low germination. Cuttings also take root poorly - only about 10%.

Caucasian hornbeam

The Caucasian hornbeam (Сarpinus caucasica Grossh) grows in the Crimea, Asia, and the Caucasus. Usually found in the mountains up to 1000 m above sea level. Pure hornbeam forms rarely, often grows in mixed deciduous. It grows to 35 m. After freezing, it grows bushy. This species does not bloom, is not resistant to frost.


Wild-horned hornbeam is found in mixed shady coniferous-deciduous forests of China, Primorsky Territory, Japan, and Korea. Distributed in the foothills up to 300 m. It tolerates shade well.

This view is very beautiful and peculiar. Decorative is its transparent in the sun, delicate foliage, original fruits. Looks great in combination with conifers. The crown is very thick, sprawling, lowered low. The bark of trees is silver gray, with deep cracks. Young shoots are initially covered with hairs, adult branches are bare, many lentils are located on them. Leaves are pointed, narrow-heart-shaped at the base, bicilate on the edge. At first, the foliage is light green, in the fall it becomes rusty or pale reddish. Male earrings 8 cm long grow on legs densely covered with hairs. Women's earrings are like hop cones, the same green, thick, grow up to 25 cm in length. The nut-fruit is dark brown, the hornbeam begins to bear fruit in 20 years.

This species is unpretentious to the soil. Very wind-resistant due to the root system, which is superficial and highly branched. Lives up to 200 years, but already at the age of 50 the peak begins to dry. A horny hornbeam grows slowly, tolerates haircuts and transplants.

Easily bred by seeds, root shoots, layering. Can develop an impenetrable hedge.

Hornbeam Oriental

The eastern hornbeam is also called the hornbill (Сarpinus orientalis Mill). It can be found in the Crimea, Asia Minor, Iran, the Caucasus, the Balkans, where it grows on the dry and rocky slopes of the mountains, in the undergrowth of coniferous forests. The eastern hornbeam grows to 5 m, rarely to 18. It does not bloom, has a very low winter hardiness.

Grab Turchaninova

Grab Turchaninova (Сarpinus turczaninovii Hance) can be found in East Asia in mountain forests.

It grows to 5 m, the growth rate is slow. This type of hornbeam does not bloom, has a low winter hardiness.

Propagate it by the root shoot.

Hornbeam. Its features. Growing and caring (video)

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