Where not to put the Pyramidal European Hornbeam.

Everett Wray
July 16, 2018

This is the Carpinus betulus 'Fastigiata' Pyramidal European Hornbeam, which is a very popular tree, used as a columnar variety. When planted in its proper spot, it can surprise you with a width up to 25 foot in 15 to 20 years time.

European Hornbeam at Lowes in Pasco WA.

We watched these trees get planted as little 1" to 1 1/4" trees in the Lowes parking lot in Pasco, Washington about 10 years ago.  They have struggled for years. Every tree is dying due to damage to the trunk, all on the west side of the tree, which gets the heat of the afternoon sun reflecting off the pavement. Unfortunately, this tree is not a very good choice for this very hot location.

There are many choices that will work better in this setting, and larger canopy trees would give more shade. For one, the Columnar Oaks like Regal Prince and Kindred Spirit. Also, Acer Truncatum Urban Sunset is a new tree that is a very hardy cross between Truncatum and Platanoides, with excellent red fall color. It is 35' high and 20' wide.

As we have worked with these different varieties of trees, we can't help but say something. We hope this can help as you plan and design your future landscapes.
Thank You,

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