Nothofagus antarctica (G.Forst.) Oerst.

Antarctic beech

Family: Nothofagaceae
54º 34.912N
5º 55.809W

The tree tag number relates to the black tree-maintenance tags, usually fixed on the trunk, 2 to 3m above ground level.

The antarctic beech grows in South America from Chile to Cape Horn. It is said to grow further south than any other trees in the world.   It is a very hardy small tree growing up to about 15m. The leaves with 4 pairs of veins are usually quite crinkly and are very shiny when newly opened in the Spring. The flowers, noticeable because of the prominent dangling anthers, are produced just as the leaves are expanding. The bark starts off smooth but becomes scaly with deep fissures. The young tree in Belfast Botanic Gardens is close to the boundary with the Botanic Primary School. It flowered well in 2011.

Photos taken in Belfast Botanic Gardens in 2009. Copyright: Friends of Belfast Botanic Gardens.