Its parent, Betula pendula, is the European white birch. River birch occurs frequently along stream banks throughout Kentucky, except in the Bluegrass region. Another of the attractive non-white birch trees is the yellow birch (Betula alleghaniensis). Site design : Academic Web Pages. Heritage River Birch. Leaf of river birch. • … Companion plants grown with a birch tree need to complement -- not hide or visually overpower -- the ornamental features of the birch and grow in a climate and soil that already favors the birch tree. Keep reading to learn more river birch tree facts, such as river birch tree care and effectively using river birch trees in … Plant it in full sun to partial shade. River birch trees tolerate the summer heat better than paper birch trees, meaning they are better suited to grow in warmer regions. "River" birch is called so because, in its native habitat, it is often found growing near rivers. They are native to this region, and they prefer its cool temperatures. 'Purpurea' 'Crimson Frost'. Plants benefit with a 3 to 4 inch layer of mulch and supplemental water in dry periods. Birch trees prefer to occupy habitats in cool, moist areas, including peatlands (moors, peatbogs), river banks, and lakeshores. Although it tends to be a medium-sized tree, one tree in Alabama has grown to 111 feet tall, with a diameter of more than 4 feet. River birch is distinguished by having alternate, simple leaves, 1 1/2 to 3 1/2 inches long, 3/4 to 2 1/2 inches wide, sharp pointed, double toothed or shallowly lobed, with a wedge shaped base. river birch Betula nigra. Native to the Eastern U.S., they will reach a height of 40 to 70 feet with a spread of 25 to 35 feet. Yellow Birch. River Birch Betula nigra. Betula nigra-- River Birch Page 2 Crown density: dense Figure 2. This is a reference to its bark, which starts out salmon but turns darker as … Still relatively short-lived when compared to many shade trees. ‘Heritage' - Heat-loving, highly adaptive cultivar that won a Pennsylvania Horticulture Society Gold Medal in 1990. More About this Tree ... Birch, River Common Name: River Birch Betula nigra Tree Size: Large Leaf Type: Deciduous Comments: Works well as multiple trunk specimen. These specimens are full-sun trees, but they will also tolerate partial shade. As suggested by its name, the branches of this birch tree droop, or “weep” down towards the ground. As a landscape plant, it is grown as a single-stem tree or in a clump as a multi-stemmed tree with three or more trunks. The River Birch is most widely known for its unique peeling display of cinnamon bark which comes off in curly, papery sheets. Bark: Salmon-colored bark that peels; lighter in color than the native river birch. But gray birch trees grow in clumps, producing multiple trunks, and their bark, which does not peel, is not especially attractive. River birch (Betula nigra) is an adaptable tree growing in U.S. Department of Agriculture hardiness zones 4 through 9. The river birch is a popular tree for river banks and wet parts of the garden. The catkins of the River Birch are used by redpolls and pine siskins. Paper Birch, White Birch, Canoe Birch. szechuanica x Betula pendula. Has good resistance to bronze birch borer. Use wraps based on type of protection needed. Shiny, … Plant Family. Introducing "One Thing": A New Video Series. Plant them in full sun to partial shade. Their height and spread are similar to that of river birch trees. They can be multi-trunked trees or grown to have just one trunk. WARNING: Some websites to which these materials provide links for the convenience of users are not managed by the University of Kentucky. Several Seasons of Color From One Tough Tree Why Dura Heat® River Birch Trees? Height: 40 to 70 feet. Leaf Type: Deciduous Comments: Adapted to many soil and moisture conditions. They are also more borer-resistant than most birches. But it derives its common name not from the color of its foliage, but rather from the color of its peeling bark. Betulaceae -- Birch family. River birch trees can be grown in planting zones 4 to 9. Betula nigra L.. River Birch. We have an inventory of over 500 heavy earthmoving machines and watering equipment, which we are continually upgrading. Betula nigra The bark of a young river birch Conservation status Least Concern Scientific classification Kingdom: Plantae Clade: Tracheophytes Clade: Angiosperms Clade: Eudicots Clade: Rosids Order: Fagales Family: Betulaceae Genus: Betula Subgenus: Betula subg. G. Lumis. The Kentucky champion tree is in Johnson County and is 80 feet tall. "River" birch is called so because, in its native habitat, it is often found growing near rivers. The university does not review, control or take responsibility for the contents of those sites. For graduate student information, contact Dr. Doug Archbold at 859-257-3352, or darchbol@uky.edu, River Birch - Betula nigraBirch Family (Betulaceae). This site was last updated on December 18, 2020. Secondary Names: red birch Leaf Type: Deciduous Texas Native: Firewise: Tree Description: Usually a medium-sized tree to 40 feet tall and one or more trunks 8" to 12" in diameter, but can reach heights of up to 90 feet, with an oval crown of drooping branches. Birches are considered “bleeders”, avoid pruning in late spring before leaves emerge. Each tree belongs to a plant family. River birch can be used as a screen or shade tree, and as a street tree with irrigation. Prefers loamy, well-drained soils, but works on dry sites as well. The “National Audubon Society Field Guide to Trees” describes river birch leaves as being “nearly four-sided;” their irregular shape somewhat resembling that of a diamond. But do not settle for trees alone when it comes to growing plants for fall color, because there are plenty of shrubs and vines with fall color that gives you additional choices (in fact, being smaller, such plants may be better suited to small yards). Leaf Type: Deciduous Comments: Good long-lived shade tree. Foliage: Triangular green leaves with toothed edges, yellow fall colour. For general undergraduate student information, contact Dr. Rick Durham at (859) 257-3249, or rdurham@uky.edu. Their shapes vary from the oval form of white birch to the shape that characterizes the river birch. Pests Bronze birch borer is a … It normally grows with a central leader and small-diameter, dark-colored lateral branches. Copyright 2020, University of Kentucky, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment. 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