The Beech is a fine tree, suitable for ornamental pleasure-grounds, but too large for the shrubbery.
The Purple Beech is a European variety, propagated by grafting upon the common species. It is a small tree, but may be kept within bounds by pruning in, and is very desirable in a collection of shrubs, on account of its dark-purple, almost black, leaves. The younger leaves are purplish-crimson, and present a brilliant appearance during the bright sunshine. In summer the foliage loses its brilliant tints, the leaves changing to a purplish-green.
No collection of shrubs should be deficient of the Purple, or Copper Beech, as it is sometimes called. The contrast between this and most other shrubs is very marked. The Weeping Beech is another desirable variety; its drooping pendulous branches are very ornamental. Propagated in the same way as the other, either by budding, grafting, or inarching.