Fagus sylvatica

The beech is one of the most beautiful, indigenous forest – and park trees. It is also called the Mother and the Queen of the Forest known for its warm atmosphere and gracious and refined occur. Under the English Shaman Dusty Miller, it would give comfort to people who see her. I think the builders of Gothic cathedrals inspired by beech forests.
The beech symbolizes wisdom and motherly warmth.

spread
Beech is common in deciduous forests of the lowlands into the mountains (up to 1600 m). It likes a moist climate with mild winters and a nutrient rich soil. It grows on sand – and chalky soil. Beech found anywhere in Europe. In South-Eastern Europe, we find rather beech (Fagus orientalis), which has a grooved bark.

In Germany the main tree species beech. The largest beech forest is found in the southern German Alps, Bayrischer Forest, Swabian Alp, Pfälzisches Bergland, Odenwald, Spessart and eastern Schleswijk-Holstein. The impressive beech forests there are also respectful “Buchendome” (beech cathedral) mentioned. Beech often grow together with oak, mountain maple, spruce, fir and Douglas fir.

In the Netherlands we mainly beech on the Veluwe, in different places too detached beech. Beech can be used as avenue trees. Beautiful beech avenues are found in the provinces of Utrecht and Gelderland.

naming
The word is derived from beech wood or beoce (ancient Indian language Sanskrit =) and includes both books as a tree.
Ancient runes were often carved in beech bark of beech sticks were thrown there to read. Hence the German words and Buche Buchstabe (letter).

The Latin and Greek word Oesophageal phagein means food and has to do with edible fruits.
Sylvatica means of the forests.
Dutch people’s names are: BIEK, buuk, books, buckler, tree goats.

The beechnuts are sometimes called mogul.

Places that have to do with beech, include Boekel (N.Br.) Boekelo (Ov.) and Boekhoute (Flanders).

The Buckingham is derived from English beech. In Romania, where many beech forests are found, as have places and Bukovina to Bucharest with beech.

mythology
In Germanic mythology the aisle dedicated to the god Odin. According to a Germanic ritual they poured blood of sacrificial animals on the trunk of a beech tree with red leaves, that the tree would not die.

The Romans had the aisle dedicated to Jupiter. Corne in the hills of Tusculum covered with beech, were devoted to Diana, goddess of the forest, the animals and the moon. Sacrificial vessels were made ​​of beech wood.

Allerheiligen (1 november) in een beuk. Bleef de wond droog, dan moest men met een strenge winter rekening houden. Beukenhout, geslagen met nieuwe maan, is duurzaam en wordt niet door de houtworm bevallen. Een stuk beukenhout dat je bij je draagt, beschermt je tegen ongeluk en stimuleert je creativiteit. Het drinken van water uit een holle beuk zou schurft en andere huidziekten genezen. Als er veel beukennootjes zijn, zal de winter streng worden.

Plantkenmerken
De beuk hoort net als de inlandse eik en mediterrane tamme kastanje tot de napjesdragersfamilie (Fagaceae). De vrouwelijke bloemsteel groeit namelijk uit tot een napje.

Deze loofboom kan een hoogte van 40 m bereiken. In de bossen staan de stammen hoog opgericht, zonder veel takken. Maar vrijstaande exemplaren blijven kort en krijgen een grote, brede kroon.

De gespreide, gesteelde bladeren staan in twee rijen en zijn eivormig tot elliptisch spits. De randen zijn zwak gegolfd, eerst zijdeachtig behaard, later kaal. Zij vormen vanaf de basis van de tak een zogenaamd ‘bladmozaïek’,d.w.z. dat zij een gelijkmatig verdeeld bebladerd vlak vormen. Daardoor kan de boom een grote hoeveelheid licht absorberen en kunnen we daardoor onder een beuk van schaduw genieten.
The spread, stalked leaves are arranged in two rows and are ovate to elliptic tip. The edges are weak wavy, silky hair first, later naked. They form from the base of the branch a ‘leaf mosaic’, ie that an evenly leafy plane. Thus the tree can absorb a large amount and we can therefore under a shade of beech enjoy.

Autumn coloration of leaves

In a beech forest found on the floor just spring flowers (anemones and small bulbs) before the beech leaves are anticipated. The beech leaf buds are slender and pointed. The buttons also contain flowers are thicker and longer. The silky coat of the young leaves prevents dehydration and protects against frosts, as the beech walk out during the late spring.

During the winter, leaves often hang on the tree until it falls away when the new sheet bleed.

The nave is monoecious. The male catkins are many floral and hang on long steal. The female flowers have two, and enclosed by a lid kortgesteeld with four valves, the bowl.

Inside the bowl is developing the seed, the beech nut. It is triangular and brown. It contains two folded cotyledons, which are very oily. During germination, these above ground.

Years with many nuts in alternate years with little nuts. On a hot summer with a rich bloom following a good harvest. After a rich year beechnuts under the beech forest in spring covered with green seedlings for the survival of the forest care.

The trunk is light gray to gray, thin and smooth and also develops with age no scales. Some old specimens (stone beech) have cracks in their bark.

Journal of the copper beech

Use
Beech forests were once planted specifically for hunting, because the notes are attractive to wild boar. From that period date the extensive beech forests in France, Germany and Denmark. It also served as beech nuts as firewood and fodder. From beech wood was called “Meiler, charcoal burning. Potash was used for the manufacture of glass produced. The heavy and hard beech (white with a red reflection) is used for furniture, flooring, sills, etc. to make veneer. It is inelastic and is easy to work with changing humidity. To counter this, the wood is steamed. These steamed wood is used in the cartwright, for curved furniture and parquet floors. The waste wood is very suitable as firewood, for example of firing furnaces and smoking fish. The beechnuts can be oil presses. It is used in the food and for making soaps. It is especially suitable as lamp oil.

Beech leaves were also used as stuffing for mattresses.

In natural beech bark medicine used to treat fever and inflammation. Beech Leaves can be put on inflammation. For pain in the gums, lips or you can choose to chew the leaves. Beech nuts are edible. When one eats too much may lead to extraordinary joy, followed by headache and nausea. This is due to the weak narcotic substance Fagin.

Types of beech
There are approximately 10 species of beech. Some are with us as an ornamental trees planted. Known include “Atropunicea, collective term for all types of reddish-brown leaves.

The weeping beech (‘Pendula’) is hanging branches whose ends touch the ground and there could even roots.
The beech fern (Asplenifolia “) has deeply incised leaves.
The Chinese beech (Fagus engleriana) is 15 meters high and has a broad, oval crown. The leaves have a pointed blade tips and are bluish green.
American beech (Fagus grandi folia) is 30 m high and wide spreading crown. Remarkably, his silver-gray, smooth bark. The leaves are remarkably large.
The Caucasian or Oriental beech (Fagus orientalis) is a fast growing tree of at least 30 m. It is native to southern Europe, Asia Minor and northern Iran. The nuts have a brush-shaped shell.

Beech (Eng.)
Hêtre (French)
Buche (German)

Fagaceae – Beech family

Also see our articles on beech:

The difference between beech and hornbeam

Beech or Fagus in our plants guide

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