European Birch (White Birch)
Leaf Characteristics
  • broad, flat leaves
  • simple leaves
  • not lobed
  • fine, double teeth
  • small teeth between large
  • base symmetrical
  • base not wedge-shaped
  • leaf short
European Birch (White Birch)
Fruit Characteristics
  • cone or cone-like
  • cone greater than 1 inch long
  • wings on both sides of scales
  • seed with wings
  • smooth winged nutlets
  • cone short, robust
  • cone 3 times as long as wide
European Birch (White Birch)
Betula pendula (formerly Betula alba)

The White Birch of Europe has been introduced into southern Canada and northern parts of the U.S. The bark is smooth and white, and it peels in thin layers, but not as freely as that of the Paper Birch. Also, the noticeably drooping branches of this introduced tree contrast with the nearly horizontal branches of the native Paper Birch. The European Birch grows well in moist soils and landscapers plant it on lawns, in parks and in cemeteries. The European Birch is considered by many to be graceful and attractive. Therefore, although short-lived, its main use in the U.S. is as an ornamental tree.

Tree Size height 30' - 60' diameter 1' - 2' Bark Catkin