How to Grow and Care for the Yellow Birch

How to Grow and Care for the Yellow Birch

The Yellow Birch is a stately massive tree with dramatic coloring. The tree types small yellow blossoms in spring which turn out to be enticing catkins. Its leaves flip an excellent golden yellow in fall, and its shiny bark peels and provides beautiful texture. The bark’s shade appears to be like like a deep yellowish brown, giving the tree its frequent identify; on mature bushes, this shade shifts regularly from a silvery gray to a deep reddish brown over time.

The yellow birch may be very long-lived, residing on common 100 and fifty years; some outdated progress forest specimens of yellow birch are over 300 years outdated. Yellow birch bushes can develop to between sixty and seventy-five ft in peak, with a large spreading cover up thirty to fifty ft huge. Sure, it may be virtually as huge as it’s tall! It is the most important North American birch tree. The tree from afar has an virtually round trying form on account of its comparatively huge cover. It is one of many largest hardwood tree species in North America.

Along with its pleasing look, the younger stems of this tree have an uncommon wintergreen aroma, just like the odor of a candy birch although not as potent. Each bushes have important oils discovered within the bark which may be used to supply the old school beverage loved by American setters: birch beer. For those who’ve by no means had birch beer (not really a “beer” however a candy smooth drink), this tree simply could make you need to strive it. Additionally, the sap of the yellow birch might be boiled down like maple syrup; it has a decrease sugar content material than maple, however the sap is ample and birch syrup has many culinary makes use of. The stems and twigs are additionally loved by wildlife, particularly cottontail rabbits, moose and whitetail deer. Numerous birds take pleasure in consuming the buds, and the yellow bellied sapsucker will drill holes in its bark to gather the candy sap. This close-grained hardwood may be very helpful within the lumber commerce. Native American peoples all through the Northeast have a historical past of utilizing this tree for constructing supplies and medicinal cures derived from its bark, which is wealthy in risky important oils.

Botanical Identify Betula alleghaniensis
Frequent Identify Yellow birch, golden birch
Plant Kind Deciduous tree
Mature Measurement 60 – 75′ tall
Solar Publicity Full solar to partial shade
Soil Kind Fertile sandy loam, well-drained, acidic to alkaline
Soil pH 4.Zero to eight.0
Bloom Time Spring
Flower Shade Yellow catkins
Hardiness Zones three to 7
Native Areas Northeastern North America
The golden brown bark of this mature yellow birch in jap Pennsylvania exhibits this tree’s distinctive magnificence and bark texture.

 Nicholas A. Tonelli / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

Find out how to Develop Yellow Birch

Due to its unusually huge cover, selecting an acceptable location is of paramount significance when planting this tree. Its cover can stand up to fifty ft huge, so give it loads of room. The brilliant yellow and golden leaves on show in autumn can be a surprising accompaniment to different bushes that get vibrant in autumn, like Japanese maples, sweetgum bushes, bronze maples, or crimson oaks.


The yellow birch might be grown in soil that has a wide-ranging pH, and whereas it tends to desire barely acidic soil, it tolerates alkaline soil simply wonderful. The soil must be wealthy and well-drained, although. A sandy loam is good, however like different birch bushes, the yellow birch is adaptable to various soil circumstances.


Full solar is good for the yellow birch, but when grown in a woodland panorama, or close to buildings, it will possibly deal with partial shade additionally. The seedlings is not going to germinate in full shade.


The yellow birch would not have any particular water wants past regular rainfall. In occasions of drought, nevertheless, it would profit from a weekly deep watering on the roots.

Temperature and Humidity

This tree is discovered all through jap Canada and New England, and as far south as Georgia, thought it tends to develop extra abundantly within the Northeast. It does greatest inside hardiness zones between USDA three and seven. It would not like excessive dryness or warmth. If grown in a spot with scorching summers, its longevity might be shortened significantly. Also called swamp birch, the yellow birch usually grows naturally alongside ponds, swamps and in damp woodlands.

Pests and Upkeep

The yellow birch does have some insect pests that may turn out to be problematic: primarily birch leaf miners and birch skeletonizers. Like different birches, the bark can sometimes develop cankers. Pruning is really helpful to maintain the tree in good condition however wait till after the rising season; late fall (late November by way of early December) is good.The primary cause to attend for pruning is as a result of the bronze birch borer is lively in spring and could also be drawn to recent cuts on the tree, and may trigger harm. The yellow birch is pretty proof against this damaging insect, but it surely’s greatest to train warning and prune when the tree’s progress has gone dormant.

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