A quick guide to three popular Birch trees available for sale at the Nursery, including Betula Pendula, Betula jacquemontii and Betula Nigra – otherwise known as Silver Birch, Himalayan Birch and River Birch.
The Silver birch tree takes on a whole new measure of importance in the winter months. Through the grey winter months a splash of bright white bark can enlighten any garden. This native tree is widely planted through the UK both in amenity and woodland settings. King and Co’s silver birch trees can be ordered online and delivered the very next day.
A particularly valuable tree for a large garden, it will grow to around thirty feet tall, has an upright, compact habit and rather graceful arching lateral branches. Betula pendula will grow almost anywhere in most soils that are reasonably well drained.
Improving Air Quality
Silver birch trees have been proven to capture up to 79% of diesel exhaust ultrafine pollutant particles (UFPs) from the air we breathe. Wang et. al (2019) from the University of Lancaster concluded in their tests on UFPs, that Silver birch trees have a very high capability for capturing airborne pollutant particles. This evidence would suggest that Silver Birch are key trees to help to improve air quality – particularly in urban areas. Betula pendula trees should therefore be considered as a must for roadside planting. Read the full research article here.
Betula utilis Jacquemontii
In recent years the native birch has often been confused with the cultivar Betula utilis jaquemontii, the Himalayan birch which has an even more strikingly white bark than Betula pendula. It has now become one of the most popular trees in the UK and is particularly effective in urban settings, where it is often planted in a group setting to great effect.
The white bark of the Himalayan birch tree means it is one of a few trees which can provide winter interest once the yellow Autumnal leaves fall. Another tree famed for winter interest would be the Tibetan cherry (Prunus serrula. Tibetica) which has shiny mahogany/red bark.
Another type of birch that is finally being specified in wetter environments is the River birch, Betula Nigra. A most valuable tree that has until recently been undervalued by architects and designers. Apart from providing an alternative to the willows and alders, Betula nigra has an impressive peeling bark that once again is particularly valuable in the winter months.