BETULA ALBA – River Birch
The River Birch tree is popular deciduous ornamental tree and has a rich cultural history.
[Elementary School students]
Did you know?
Do birds like to eat any part of the tree?
* The catkins (flower clusters) of the River Birch are eaten and appreciated by a wide range of songbirds.
Deer like to eat what part of the tree?
* The foliage (leaves) are eaten by deer and other browsers.
Long ago farmers used what parts of the tree?
* River birch wood was once used for ox yokes, wooden shoes and other items around the farm.
Leaf: Green Summer
[Middle School students]
Habitat (where it likes to live) http://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/PlantFinder/PlantFinderDetails.aspx?kempercode=x800
* Grows in medium to wet soils
* Can be grown in partial shade to full sun environments
* Tolerates hot and dry conditions
* Location: Eastern United States (Zone 4 to 9)
Requirements (what it needs to live)
* Water: Medium to wet
* Maintenance: Low
Identification (what it looks like) http://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/PlantFinder/PlantFinderDetails.aspx?kempercode=x800
* Readily identified in the winter because of its bright exfoliating (shedding) bark
Flower – Fruiting catkins
Trunk – Single stem or clump (multi-stem) forms
[High School students]
Habit (how it grows)
* Height: 40 to 70 feet
* Spread: 40 to 60 feet
* Bloom Time: April to May
* Sun: Full sun to part shade
* Tolerate: Wet and dry soils
Suggested Use (where to plant it in the garden and landscape):
* Private residences – For four season use on a home-owners property
* Rain Gardens – To look good and help shade other plants
* Parks – Seth Hand Park