Birch

photo by Andrew McKinlay CC BY-NC

Birch (20-70 ft) has triangular green leaves with serrated edges that turn yellow and then fall in autumn. The bark on mature trees is white and peels in paper-like strips. Male and female catkins form in the spring.

Birch is common in the temperate and boreal forests of Canada and the northern United States.

Paper/White Birch is native to North America, while Silver Birch grows in Europe. Bog (Swamp) Birch, a shrub (3-13 ft tall), and Water Birch (25-40 ft tall) grow around bogs and wet areas over many parts of North America.

Did you know? Birch bark can be used as paper or to make baskets and canoes.