Whitebarked Himalayan Birch
Betula utilus var. jacquemontii
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon:
- Deciduous tree, 30-50+ ft (9-15+ m), pyramidal, upward branches, white "paper" bark on trunk and often on young branches. Leaves alternate, simple, 5-7.5 cm long, rounded or slightly cuneate (wedge-shaped with straight sides) at base, margin double serrated, dark green above, glandular below, pubescent on veins, 7-9 vein pairs.
- Light to part shade, especially afternoon shade. Best in cool, moist, well-drained soil; like other birches, the roots are shallow, so it is not for high traffic areas. Listed as having "some borer resistance" in the Sunset Western Garden Book, but other authorities (e.g., Univ. Minnesota, Extension) consider it "highly susceptible" to the bronze birch borer. This pest is common east of the Cascades but was essentially unknown in western Oregon before 2003; now it is becoming an increasing problem in the Portland area and Corvallis.
- See Dirr (1998, p. 140) for a discussion on this plant.
- Hardy to USDA Zone 5 Native to the western Himalayas
- jacquemontii: after Victor Jacquemont, French naturalist.
- Oregon State Univ. campus: in parking lot north of Finley drom.