Plant Picks: Cultivar Fastigiata

  • Tue Jul 24th, 2012 8:55pm
  • Life

WHAT: The cultivar Fastigiata, a European hornbeam, is the representative of Carpinus betulus that is most often seen in our region. The handsome tree has serrated leaves that are green in summer and gold in autumn. It has smooth, gray bark with a muscular look.

WHY PLANT IT: Its slow growth and adaptability to pruning make it an ideal tree for training into a hedge or topiary. It is a survivor, requiring little care and withstanding drought, poor soils and heavy pollution.

WHERE: The hornbeam will grow well in full sun or light to deep shade. It is not fussy about soil as long as it is well-drained, and it will tolerate sandy and clay situations.

SIZE: It has a tight upright habit when young, but will eventually broaden to a mature size of 30 feet wide and 40 to 50 feet high.