Windshield full of royal purple magnificence
enlarge this imageThis purple leaf beech tree is typical of those that become stars on my map as I drive in New England. The "Baby Bear" tree on the left is a red leaf Japanese maple.
Whenever I drive in New England, I enjoy seeing magnificent
purple leaf beeches (Fagus sylvatica, in all its
dark-leaf varieties). These trees belong in our 45 mph
department because even non-gardeners notice their color and
There is no finer specimen
it overwhelms one at first glance...
- Michael Dirr -
I was traveling near Mystic, Connecticut when the crown of
this purple beech took my breath away.
No question about it, I had to stop, park and walk to see
This may qualify as the "Mother of all Purple Beeches." At
any rate, I don't think I've ever seen one with a larger crown. It
goes all the way across the street.
My awe increased with every step.
The trunk fills most of the front yard. I wonder how long
this plant has been there. Beeches grow quickly when they're young
my own 25-year old beech is almost 35' tall and wide -- but
they slow down once they start producing nuts. So this one, perhaps
twice the size of some I know to be a hundred years old, may be
more than twice that age... The stories it must be able to tell if
we could only listen.