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River Birch vs Sweet Birch (Black Birch)

Betula nigra

Betula lenta

NOT AVAILABLE THIS SEASON

NOT AVAILABLE THIS SEASON

River Birch
Sweet Birch (Black Birch)

River Birch has beautiful, peeling, brown bark that reveals camel-colored and pink beneath. It is more borer resistant than white bark birches, which makes it a much longer-lived landscape tree.

Sweet Birch (Black Birch) is an attractive tree with a rounded shape native to eastern North America that would be a good addition to landscapes. It has a conical growth shape when young and as it ages the shape becomes more rounded. When the leaves, shoots, or bark are crushed they give off a sweet scent, which is what gives the Sweet Birch its name.

In early spring, the trees can be tapped and the sap used to produce syrup or fermented and made into birch beer. Pollinators and birds are attracted to the Sweet Birch as the pollen and seeds serve as a good food source. In the fall, the leaves turn golden yellow which will brighten your landscape.

The inner bark has a strong wintergreen scent and has been used to produce oil of wintergreen. Small twigs and bark of the tree can be boiled in water to make a tasty Sweet Birch tea.

RIVER BIRCH QUICK FACTS

SWEET BIRCH (BLACK BIRCH) QUICK FACTS

Zone: 3a
Zone: 3a
Height: 12 m (39 ft)
Height: 15 m (50 ft)
Spread: 5 m (16 ft)
Spread: 11 m (35 ft)
Moisture: normal, wet
Moisture: any
Light: full sun
Light: partial shade, full sun
Catkins: yes
Catkins: yes
Fall colour: golden yellow
Bark: dark gray-brown or pinkish-brown and scaly
Growth rate: fast
Growth rate: medium
Life span: medium
Life span: long
Suckering: low
Suckering: none





Other Names: black birch, water birch
Other Names: cherry birch, liliental, mahogany birch