Tree Topics logo Plant List Fact Sheet      Scientific name: Betula papyrifera
Common name: Paper birch
Next Gallery

 Photograph showing summer habit of Paper birch. Although it grows well in all types of soil, and tolerates wide variations in rain fall, it is best adapted to colder climates, and doesn't do well in most of the United States.

 Branches of Paper birch with leaves and catkins. The flowers are borne on pendulous catkins - with male and female flowers on separate catkins.

Paper birch catkin and leaf

 Close up picture of single leaf and catkin of Paper birch. The leaf margin of the Betula papyrifera is double serrate. The leaf shape is ovate and the leaf venation is pinnate.

Trunk of Paper birch with peeling bark. The bark is white and smooth and is covered with lines of raised pores or lenticels

Picture of Paper birch taken on 5-16-2004.

Morton Arboretum accession tag 919-80*10 sd E-14/69-29
Paper birch

Kingdom:  Plantae -- Plants
  Subkingdom:  Tracheobionta -- Vascular plants
  Superdivision:  Spermatophyta -- Seed plants
  Division:  Magnoliophyta -- Flowering plants
  Class:  Magnoliopsida -- Dicotyledons
  Subclass:  Hamamelidae
  Order:  Fagales
  Family:  Betulaceae -- Birch family
  Genus:   Betula L. -- birch P
  Species:  Betula papyrifera Marsh. -- paper birch P

Source for classification listing: USDA, NRCS. 2004. The PLANTS Database, Version 3.5 ( National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70874-4490 USA.

Native to U.S.

Primary use as nursery stock product and pulp wood product. Medium use as a fuel wood product.

Highly palatable to browsing animals but not to humans

no toxicity

rapid growth rate, short life span

Height at 20 Years, Maximum (feet) 40

Height, Mature (feet) 70

Low tolerance to drought, intolerant to shade


Karren J. Wcisel copyright 1999 - 2004  Home Page