Common Beech and variants

Fagus sylvatica
Fagaceae (Beech family)
At the western edge of Cory Lodge lawn, within the plantings of catkin-bearing trees, stands a Common Beech and two variant forms. There is a lovely Cut-leaved Beech, Fagus sylvatica ‘Laciniata’, displaying narrow, deeply-cut feathery leaves, a Common Beech with upward-turning tips to its long thin branches, and an outstanding Weeping Beech.
The branches of the Weeping Beech sweep right down to the ground, so that if you stand by the trunk of the tree you are enclosed in an almost complete dome, which turns bright copper in the autumn. A graft join is clearly visible some 1.5 metres clear of the ground, where the weeping form has been spliced to the rootstock.

These beeches form an original Henslow planting from the 1840s illustrating variation within species: two examples of mutants, (or ‘monstrosities’, as Henslow would have called them) produced by random and abrupt changes in the genetic code of a Common Beech.