Betula pendula 'Purpurea'
Purple European Birch
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon:
- Small, deciduous tree, pendulous, purple-black twigs, bark less white than type. Foliage deep reddish purple in spring, more bronze by summer, and bronze-green or even copper-orange in fall. Leaves normal shape (i.e., broadly ovate, sometimes rhomboidal to diamond shaped, wedge-shaped or truncate at base, 2.5-7.5 cm long, coarsely doubly serrate).
- Often lacks vigor and is a "borer magnet" (Dirr, 1998). Apparently performs best in a cold climate.
- Hardy to USDA Zone 2 Several purple-leafed clones have been developed from this selection or have originated anew (e.g., ‘Dark Prince’, ‘Purple Rain’).
- Oregon State Univ. campus: east side of Wilkinson (planted 1971).