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Are Silver Birch Trees Protected?

Updated February 08, 2019

Tall, slender and brilliant white, the silver birch -- also called the European white birch -- is thriving in the United States. You can recognise it by the dark, diamond fissures that develop on the bark as it ages.

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Although the "Lady of the Woods" looks delicate with its slim trunk, pale bark and delicate leaves, the tree is tough and hardy. Silver birches grow anywhere from old building sites to mountaintops and are among the early pioneer trees to colonise a burnt-out area.


Silver birches grow rapidly, attaining 40 feet in 20 years. Propagated by seeds or cuttings, this birch reaches maturity at 40 years, much faster than an oak that takes several centuries. The fast-growing, wide-ranging species needs no federal protection.


Although the silver birch is not protected, it does have insect enemies. It is so vulnerable to birch leafminer and bronze birch borer that the U.S. Forest Service recommends against selecting it as a landscape tree.

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About the Author

Teo Spengler

From Alaska to California, from France's Basque Country to Mexico's Pacific Coast, Teo Spengler has dug the soil, planted seeds and helped trees, flowers and veggies thrive. World traveler, professional writer and consummate gardener, Spengler earned a BA from U.C. Santa Cruz, a law degree from Berkeley's Boalt Hall, and an MA and MFA from San Francisco State. She currently divides her life between San Francisco and southwestern France.

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