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Betula occidentalis

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  • Photo by Ben Legler
  • Photo by Ben Legler

Betula occidentalis

Water Birch

Community: Riparian

Brief Description

Attractive, medium-sized riverside tree thrives in moister settings.

Full details »
  • Appealing Reddish Bark
  • Favors Moist Soil
  • Fast Growing
  • Use as Pond Screen

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Availability: Temporarily sold out. New inventory is made available in the spring and fall of each year.

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Plant Description and Details

Water Birch - The name says it all. It can be found gracing riverbanks, streamsides & edges of bogs in the wild. A relation of the popular Paper Birch, Water Birch has shiny, reddish bark similar to cherry bark. Its multiple stems and glossy leavesgrow quickly to provide an attractive specimen tree or a screen for a pond or creek. Green catkins appear in the spring, followed by brown conelike catkins that hold the mature seed in the fall.

Common Names Water Birch
Community Riparian
Drought Tolerant No
Native Range Streamsides between WA and MT, south to CA and NM
Native States CA, CO, ID, MT, NV, OR, UT, WA, WY
Hardiness Down to Zone 4
Exposure Sun - Part Shade
Placement Feature tree, tall brushy screen or in a shrub/tree grouping on a moister site.
Mature Height 20+ ft.
Mature Width 15 ft.
Group Spacing 8-10'
Blossom Color Green Catkins
Establishment Tips Water at planting and 3-4 times deeply the first summer.
Maintenance Tips Prune when young to promote desired tree form and irrigate as needed to avoid wilt.
Wildlife Birds
Plants Symbol BEOC2
Family Name Betulaceae
Lewis & Clark No

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