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River Birch

River Birch Tree
The river birch is a popular shade and ornamental tree that thrives in wet environments. It is the most widespread birch tree in the U.S. They can be found along the Great Lawn's perimeter and near Turtle Pond.

Common Name: River Birch

Scientific Name: Betula nigra

Origin: Eastern United States

Family: Betulaceae

Size: 40' - 80' tall, 40' - 60' wide

Form: Oval, irregularly spreading crown

Culture: Grows best in damp soils near water


Triangular, 1.5" - 3" long, alternate


Long, drooping catkins (male), short, upright catkins (female)


1" cones that are brown and upright


Curls and peels, shiny, pink to brown to gray