Boyd Nursery Co Boyd Catalog

River Birch - 'Betula nigra'

River Birch is a native tree to the United States. River Birch is a type of deciduous tree that is wonderful for moist, wet soils. It is relatively disease resistant. It makes an excellent tree for urban environments and can be managed easily. River Birch is a specimen tree that has an exfoliating bark that exposes the inner bark which can be colored gray-brown to cinnamon brown to reddish brown and salmon pink. For these reasons, it is an excellent tree for home landscaping.

Common Name: River Birch or Red Birch
Type: Deciduous Tree
Family: Betulaceae
Leaves: Leaves alternate and are simple, 1.5-3.5" long, sharp pointed, and lustrous green. .75-2.5" long, Leaves change to yellow in fall and soon after drop.
Stem: Pubescent at first, later essentiall glabrous, reddish brown, with warty excresences.
Size: 40 to 70' and may reach 90' in height; spread 40 to 60'
Hardiness: Zone 4 to 9. For an idea of your plant zone please visit the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map.
Habit: Pyramidal to oval-headed in youth, often rounded in outline at maturity; the trunk is usually divided into several large arching branches close to the ground; the tree is more handsome when grown as a multi-stemmed specimen.
Rate: Medium to Fast, over a 20 year period can be expected to grow 30 to 40'
Flowers: Male in 2 to 3" long, slender dark brown catkins.
Diseases & Insects: Probably the most trouble free birch but, in moist years, significant leaf spot is common that causes premature defoliation of older leaves.
Landscape Value: Very handsome specimen tree for estates, parks, golf courses, campuses and other large ares; particularly well suited to areas which are wet a portion of the year yet may be quite dry in the summer and fall; handsome for bark character and should receive wider landscape use as it becomes better known; River Birch is being planted more widely in the south
Soil Preference: Best adapted to moist soils and is usually found in the wild along stream banks and in swampy bottomlands which are periodically flooded; will survive in drier soiols although reaches its maximum development in moist, fertile areas; prefers an acidic soil (6.5 or below).
Care: Don't prune this birch and other birches until summer as they are "bleeders" and should not be cut when sap is flowing..
Fertilization: Fertilization is beneficial only when nutrients are lacking. A soil test should provide you with the nutrient levels with in the ground.

Planting Instructions: Dig a hole three times the diameter of the root system, with a depth no deeper than the original soil line on stem. Break up the soil to the finest consistency possible. Place plant in hole and fill, compacting the fill dirt. Water the plant heavily to seal soil around the roots and remove air pockets.



Interested in purchasing River Birch?
This product can only be shipped during the Winter and Spring shipping season

Boyd Nursery Company offers River Birch in 5 1-2' plant packages for $30.00 that include shipping. For further information regarding planting procedure and technique, please visit www.boydsplants.com/care/planting.html. Boyd Nursery ships via Priority Mail from zip-code 37111 and DOES NOT ship plants west of the Rocky Mountains.


Boyd Nursery does have balled and burlap trees available in wholesale quantities. Please call with the size and quantity that you are interested in, and we will provide you with a quote. Wholesale orders are shipped dependent upon the customer's needs.

1-2 Foot River Birch Seedling Wholesale Prices
Wholesale orders DO NOT include shipping.
Order Size
Price per Tree
50-99 trees
$2.00
100-299 trees
$1.25
300-999 trees
$1.00
1000-1999 trees
$0.50
2000+ trees
Please Call



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