The blue-beech is a small tree that grows no more than 33 feet high (10 metres). It has a life span of from 100 to 150 years.
The blue-beech trunk is peculiar in that it is crooked and fluted.
Its fruit is a nut in the axil of a three-lobed bract that facilitates wind dispersion.
The blue-beech occurs on deep, rich, moist soils, in valleys and along the borders of streams and swamps. It does not tolerate overly acidic soils.
It is found mainly in the understory of broadleaf forests.
It is commonly called "ironwood" owing to its hard wood, which is used mainly for making tool handles. It is also used in groves or hedges for landscaping purposes.
Leaves, alternate, simple and toothed.