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Click the number at the start of a key lead to highlight both that lead and its corresponding lead. Click again to show only the two highlighted leads. Click a third time to return to the full key with the selected leads still highlighted.

Key to Fagus

1 Lateral veins of the leaves 5-10 (-12) on each side of the midvein
1 Lateral veins of the leaves (12-) 15-18 (-20) on each side of the midvein.
..2 Leaves denticulate; cupule prickles 1-2.5 (-4) mm long, slightly to strongly recurved; cupule valves generally ovate, the apex obtuse, reddish in color; leaves with fairly dense white acicular trichomes on the lower leaf surface at maturity; leaf base sometimes clearly cordate; [plants of the Coastal Plain, Piedmont, and low to moderate elevations (mostly below 1050 m or 3500 feet) in the Mountains]
..2 Leaves sharply serrate; cupule prickles (3-) 4-10 mm long, projecting forward; cupule valves generally narrowly triangular, the apex acute, grayish-yellow in color; leaves usually lacking white acicular trichomes on the lower surface at maturity, instead with yellowish glandular hairs (acicular trichomes often present on the veins); leaf base not clearly cordate; [plants of moderate to high elevations (mostly above 1050 m or 3500 feet) in the Mountains]