Collecting the folklore and uses of plants

Copper beech

0861. A few years back the late Ivan Cresswell, who had a fine specimen in his Rectory garden, told me that the reason they were so profuse in parsonage gardens is that they were offered free to incumbents who wished to plant them to commemorate the outcome of the Battle of Waterloo. He could not recall his source, but it interested me because for a period this house was a rectory and has a similar specimen, as does the other rectory in the village. I have seen others in like situations but would like to know if the story is true [Sisland, Norfolk, August 2007].

2. There used to be a Hanging Tree in Barnstaple, on the Castle Green. It was a massive copper beech. This was felled in recent years, but was a magnificent tree which fell foul of the Parks Dept [Barnstaple, Devon, August 1992].

Images: main, cultivated, Windermere, Cumbria, May 2015; inset, planted, St John the Baptist churchyard, Frome, Somerset, May 2015 (tree no longer extant, June 2022).

  • Plant Picture

  • Scientific Name

    • Fagus sylvatica f. purpurea
  • Region

  • Alternative Names