Carpinus betulus
Common name: 
European Hornbeam
kar-PI-nus BET-u-lus
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon: 
  • Broadleaf deciduous tree, 40-60(75) ft [12-18(23) m] tall and 30-40(60) ft [9-12(18) m] wide, pyramidal in youth, oval-round at maturity.  Leaves alternate, simple, ovate-oblong, 5-13 cm long, sharply and doubly serrate, veins straight, impressed above [10(12)-14(18) pairs], dark green in summer, yellowish in fall.  Male and female flowers in separate clusters (catkins) on the same tree, male catkins yellowish, 3 cm long, female catkins greenish, to 5cm.  Female flowers have conspicuous 3-lobed green bracts, which mature to yellow-brown in fall.  Fruit is a small, 6 mm, ribbed nutlet at the base of each bract.
  • Best in full sun, tolerates light shade.  Tolerates a wide range of soil conditions, but prefers well-drained soil.  No serious pests or diseases.
  • Hardy to USDA Zone 4    Native to Europe, Asia Minor, southeast England.
  • There are a number of selections, including Emerald Avenue®, released in 2011, and the very common 'Fastigiata'.
  • Corvallis: east side of St. Mary's Catholic Church on 23rd St. between Tyler and Polk.
Click image to enlarge
  • flower catkins, spring

    flower catkins, spring

  • fruit cluster and leaves, spring

    fruit cluster and leaves, spring

  • plant habit

    plant habit

  • leaves


  • leaves and fruit clusters

    leaves and fruit clusters

  • leaves and fruit

    leaves and fruit

  • leaves and fruit, comparison

    leaves and fruit, comparison

  • leaves and fruit, fall

    leaves and fruit, fall

  • trunk, bark

    trunk, bark

  • winter twig, buds

    winter twig, buds