Paper Birch Tree (Betula papyrifera)
Category: Deciduous Trees
Paper Birch is a variety of birch trees that hails from the northern part of North America. This tree variety is also called Canoe Birch and White Birch. The Paper Birch tree is the state tree of New Hampshire and the regional tree of Saskatchewan. The Paper Birch tree has an extensive range, and it is largely found in south-central part and the interior part of Alaska and in all territories and provinces of Canada.
The Paper Birch is an average-sized deciduous tree and it is capable of attaining a maximum height of 60 feet, and remarkably to 130 feet with a maximum trunk diameter of 32 inches. The bark of this tree variety is white in color, usually brightly so, peeling in the fine flat strips, and habitually with tiny black scars and marks. In the younger Paper Birch trees that are less than five years of age, the color of the bark is brown in color with white color lenticels, creating the tree much difficult to differentiate from other trees.
The leaves of these Paper Birch trees are ovate and alternate, with a length between one inch and five inches and a breadth between two inches and four inches, with an extra serrate border. The leaf sprouts of this tree variety are small and conical in shape. They are green in color with brown colored borders. The flowers of this tree variety are wind-pollinated catkins, with a length of 1.5 inches rising from the tips of the branches. The fruit of the tree matures during the fall. The matured fruit of this tree is composed of many small winged seeds crammed between the catkin bracts. They fall between the September month and the spring season.
The Paper Birch tree manages the humidity and heat poorly, and have a shorter lifespan, whereas the these trees that grow in colder-weather regions can survive for a longer period, and they grow to much bigger sizes.
The Paper Birch tree has a malleable, but fairly heavy, white wood. The wood of this tree variety makes outstanding high-yielding firewood if seasoned appropriately. The bark of the tree is an outstanding fire starter such that it ignites at towering temperatures even during the wet condition.
The average lifespan of the Paper Birch tree is about 140 years.