Hornbeam (Carpinus betulus)

Family: Betulaceae

Flowering: March - April



The tree may reach up 10 to 25 meters height. The alternate and oval leaves are irregularly toothed, and the veins are highly prominent. The trunk has a grey bark and is usually smooth. Male and female flowers grow on the same plant. The male catkins are long (5 cm) and pending. The female catkins are shorter and subterminal.


It is commonly planted for hedges but hornbeam can also be found in coppice with standard. It is adapted to intermediate or total shade, and to fertile soils (or even to soils with low acidity).


The hornbeam pollen amounts detected in the air remain limited. Cross-reactive allergy: there is cross-reactive allergy between the pollens of the different Betulaceae species (alder, hazel, hornbeam and birch). Therefore, individuals allergic to birch pollen may also experience allergy symptoms when the concentrations of hornbeam pollen are high.