Beech Hedging Plants (Fagus sylvatica) Beech forms a beautiful, native, formal hedge with dark green leaves that turn bronze/gold in autumn. Deciduous hedges, such as Horn Beam, Beech and Hawthorn, can be planted as soon as their leaves start to fall. Look closely, and all the trunk bases are perfectly straight – the branches will all grow upward in time. Planting deciduous hedges. Smaller beech plants should be planted at a distance of 30cm apart in a single row or sometimes people prefer to plant them in a double row with plants 50cm apart in each row, the distance between the two rows is usually 30-50cm. Although it is deciduous (loses it leaves in winter), many leaves of Beech actually stay on the plants during the winter. A newly planted beech tree hedge needs regular watering during its first year or two. Both a European or Purple Copper Beech hedge can be planted by following the standard guidelines for the vast majority of hedging plants. Hedges planted in the autumn and winter have a longer time to get their roots established in the soil while the soil is moist and will need less watering, if any at all, in the summer months - so this is a good time to plant if you are not able to water your newly planted hedging plants. Once established, it can tolerate dry spells but should be given extra water during drought. Typically this means that they should be put in the ground from the middle of autumn until the end of the winter. The only things to remember are that The Purple Copper Beech, unlike the European Beech, will tolerate neither an acidic soil nor partial shade.