• AGM plants

    AGM plants have been through a rigorous trial and assessment programme. They are:

    • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
    • Available to buy
    • Of good constitution
    • Essentially stable in form & colour
    • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases

Fagus sylvatica Atropurpurea Group

copper beech

copper beech


  • Other common names copper beech
    purple beech

  • Synonyms Fagus sylvatica f. purpurea
    Fagus sylvatica 'Purpurea'

  • Family Fagaceae

  • Genus Fagus are large deciduous trees with smooth grey bark, ovate leaves colouring well in autumn, and inconspicuous flowers followed by usually spiny fruits

  • Details Atropurpurea Group are large deciduous trees grown for their deep purple leaves, which become reddish in autumn


  • Foliage Deciduous

  • Habit Bushy

  • Hardiness

    Hardiness ratings

    All ratings refer to the UK growing conditions unless otherwise stated. Minimum temperature ranges (in degrees C) are shown in brackets

    • H1a - Under glass all year (>15C)
    • H1b - Can be grown outside in the summer (10 - 15)
    • H1c - Can be grown outside in the summer (5 - 10)
    • H2 - Tolerant of low temperatures, but not surviving being frozen (1 to 5)
    • H3 - Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK (-5 to 1)
    • H4 - Hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
    • H5 - Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10)
    • H6 - Hardy in all of UK and northern Europe (-20 to -15)
    • H7 - Hardy in the severest European continental climates (< -20)




  • Full Sun

  • Partial Shade

  • Aspect North-facing or East-facing or South-facing or West-facing

  • Exposure Sheltered or Exposed


  • Chalk


  • Chalk


  • Chalk


  • Chalk


  • MoistureWell-drained, Moist but well-drained

  • SoilChalk, Clay, Sand, Loam

  • pHAcid, Alkaline, Neutral


  • Ultimate height Higher than 12 metres

  • Ultimate spread wider than 8 metres

  • Time to ultimate height more than 50 years

How to grow

Cultivation Grow in well-drained soil in sun or partial shade

Propagation Propagate by seed

Suggested planting locations and garden types Flower borders and beds Architectural

How to care

Pruning Pruning group 1

Pests Aphids and beech bark scale may be a problem

Diseases May be affected by coral spot and heart and root rot in mature trees

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