Everyone knows this tree. You probably run into him on a daily basis. But how do you recognize there trees and what makes them so special, despite the fact that they've become so common to us? An ordinary Beech can be recognized by his smooth trunk. You can recognize a Beech forest by the darkness that it produces. Multiple layers of leaves intersect, keeping a lot of light out. The Saxons and Teutons used breechwood or bark to carve their runes into. That's why the tree is often connected to the development of writing systems. The tree can grow taller than 40 meters and originates from Middle-Europe, West-Russia and the Caucasus.
Sprookjes en mythen
Beeches are known for the fact that they always keep their distance from other trees. Sometimes they even grow alone. Even within a Beech forest, you can see that the trees don't grow very close to each other. Nothing grows underneath a Beech tree - you will see it the next time you come across one ;). Beech trees are therefor known as 'lonely' trees. This has been the inspiration of many fairytales and myths, like for example 'The Lonely King'.
Curative powers of the Beech
The Beech is used in the Bach flower. This remedy stimulates tolerance in people with an arrogant and overly critical attitude towards others. In the early springtime the new leaves of the tree are edible. You can also make them into a drink or licor. The leaves help to drift urine. Tar can be retrieved from the wood of a Beech. That tar was used to treat skin conditions, arthritis and rheumatism in the past. Nowadays it is still used as a massage oil.
The Beech as protector
When you are hiking through a forest and you're suddenly caught in a thunderstorm, the best place to seek shelter is underneath a Beech tree. These trees dispatch the electricity of lightning straight into the ground, faster than other species of trees. Beech do need protection from the sun, because they can catch a sunburn due to their thin bark. The Beech is also seen as a wishing tree. When you carve your wish into a stick from the Beech and then bury it, you can tell the tree your wishes. When you carry wood or leaves from a Beech with you, your creativity wil get a boost.
The Beech in the Tree Calendar
In the Tree Calendar of the Celts we can find the Beech tree and the White Beech. The White Beech is described as a 'vulnerable peacemaker'. People who are born between the 4th of June and the 13th of June and the second of December and the eleventh of December have this tree as 'Tree of life'. People with the White Beech as Tree of life have a deep sense for justice and are very loyal. They feel easily responsible for things and they want to bypass differences, because they want to give everyone the same chances en they are very forgiving. Even when these people are struggling, they care their fate with dignity.
The Beech tree is described as a 'patient go-getter'. People who are born on the 22th of December have the Beech tree as Tree of life. These people patiently await their fate. They are convinced that their time will come. When that time comes, they go all out. They take on their new role with grace. They do tend to forget lessons from the past, because they are too fixated on present and future.
It is a rather special tree, isn't it? Even though it has become so common in our eyes. Is there something more you would like to know about this beautiful species? Let us know, we will eagerly find out for you :)