Fagus, deciduous beech (Nothofagus gunnii), Lake Fenton, Mount Field National Park.
Fagus (Nothofagus gunnii), Lake Fenton, Mount Field National Park. (photograph: Peter Grant)


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Fagus is ​​​​​​​Tasmania’s only winter deciduous species, and one of only a handful of deciduous species in Australia. Fagus is a paleoendemic species (formerly widespread but now restricted to a smaller area), of a Gondwanan group which has similar species in New Zealand and South America. Fagus only occurs in areas that have remained long unburnt.​

The annual 'turning of the fagus' in mid-autumn produces a riot of colour in Tasmania's high country. The crinkle-cut leaves turn from brilliant gold to rust red and orange creating a majestic tapestry in the alpine landscape. The colours reach a peak around Anzac Day (April 25) and typically will ​continue to stay vibrant for around a month. ​​

The phenomenon attracts an influx of admirers particularly to Lake Fenton​ and Tarn Shelf at Mount Field National Park and Cradle Mountain's Dove Lake and Crater Lake​. ​​

Keep an eye on our News and events pages for upcoming activities.​


​Common name: Fagus, deciduous beech or tanglefoot

Scientific name: Nothofagus gunnii

Best place to see it​