European hazelnut is often grown as a large shrub, but it can also be used as a small tree. This species produces edible hazelnuts or filberts.
This plant has some cultivated varieties. Go to list of cultivars.
All Common Names:
Tree or Plant Type:
- Mixed border,
- Small tree (15-25 feet),
- Compact tree (10-15 feet),
- Large shrub (more than 8 feet)
- Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily),
- Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
- Zone 4,
- Zone 5 (Chicago),
- Zone 6,
- Zone 7,
- Zone 8
- Moist, well-drained soil
- Alkaline soil
Season of Interest:
- Early fall,
- Mid fall
Flower Color & Fragrance:
Shape or Form:
Size and Form
This species can be a small tree or a large, suckering shrub. Mature height can range from 12 to 20 feet.
Tree & Plant Care
Maintenance may be high due to the need to remove excess suckers,
Tolerant of alkaline soils.
Disease, pests, and problems
Crown gall, leaf spots and scale insects can occur.
Japanese beetles can be a problem.
Eastern filbert blight can be a serious problem on this species.
Native geographic location and habitat
Found in woodlands and hedgerows Europe.
W. Asia, Greece, Turkey
Bark color and texture
The brown bark is somewhat shiny and peels slightly.
Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture
Simple, alternate leaves; ovate to heart-shaped with a doubly-toothed margin.
Green in summer with greenish-yellow fall color.
Flower arrangement, shape, and size
Yellow, male flowers in pendulous catkins; tiny pink females at the end of branches.
Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions
Edible hazelnuts (filberts) enclosed in a frilly husk; mature from September to October.
Harry Lauder's Walking Stick (Corylus avellana 'Contorta'): This shrubby cultivar has curly, twisted stems that make an interesting winter feature. It grows 8 to 10 feet tall and seldom produces fruit. This is a grafted plant, always remove suckers which are part of the rootstock.
Red Majestic (Corylus avellana 'Red Majestic'): Another cultivar with curled stems. Foliage is reddish-purple instead of green.
Purple Haze hazelnut (Corylus 'Purple Haze'): An upright hybrid shrub reaching 8 to 10 feet high and 8 feet wide. New foliage emerges reddish-purple fading to bronzy green.