River Birch: A Multi-Season Sensation!

river birch tree trunk

Spring weather has arrived and soon April’s rains will be here. If you’re anxious to get outside to get a bit of exercise, hear the birds, see some nature, may I suggest you help prevent stormwater runoff and improve the air quality around your home in the process by planting a River Birch? Planting a tree is a way each of us can improve air quality, prevent stormwater runoff while also creating habitat and providing privacy. If you have an area that receives full to partial-sun and has average to wet soil I’d suggest you look at planting a landscape tree that looks great as a specimen or in a grove. River Birch (Betula nigra) is a tree for all seasons. In spring its green leaves appear, serrated and graceful, they persist until fall. In Fall and through winter, as the leaves drop the attractive bark becomes the star.

Birds and butterflies are attracted to them and they can provide valuable shade along a patio or porch. River birch can be planted in swales, close to a home (10’ away), along a dry riverbed or even along the road – but not under power lines. They are highly adaptable and a valuable tree for any landscape.

As coronavirus is keeping many of us in our homes, let’s not go stir crazy – rather, take this time to do a bit of online shopping. What better way to spend a few minutes than by browsing the Direct Native Plants site and selecting some native plants for yourself or a friend. They’ll quickly be sent to your home and once they arrive, you’ll have another good reason to get outside! Order your River Birch today!   Alison Milligan Maryland Mstr. Gardener/Mstr. Naturalist/Mstr. Watershed Steward Chesapeake Bay Landscape Professional (CBLP) Alison Milligan is a full-time volunteer who dedicates her time to educating and engaging with residents and communities across Maryland. She helps them to create beautiful landscapes, protect our waterways and create habitat for local fauna using native plants.

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