How much does a river birch tree cost

How Much Does a Birch Tree Cost?

Written by: Staff

Last Updated:  August 14, 2018

The birch tree is closely related to the breech and oak tree.   It is part of the Betulaceae family, which also includes hazels and alders, and they are considered to be small to medium-sized trees, thriving in temperate climates.  Two of the most common species found in yards across the Northeast include the River Birch and White Birch.

“Birch Trees” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by  saaby

How much does a birch tree cost?

On average, a birch tree can range anywhere from $5 to as much as $200.  This is going to depend on the size of the tree, the quality and where it’s purchased from.  A tree that is smaller than four feet tall, for instance, will be less than $10 while a tree taller than nine feet will cost more than $85 per tree.

Lowe’s, for instance, sells a 12-foot clump river birch tree for close to $60.

The Willis Orchard, on its website, lists the prices they charge.  A one to two-foot river birch tree will retail for about $7, while a larger tree, seven to eight feet tall, can cost $80, minus the shipping charges.

VarietyAverage Price
Crimson Frost- $75 for 2-gallon
- $125 for 15-gallon
European White / Silver- $15 for 3.25-gallon
- $125 for 28.5-gallon
Gray- $7 (three feet)
- $9 (four feet)
Heritage Birch- $75 (four feet)
Jacquemonti / Whitebarked Himalayan- $85 for 10.25-gallon
Paper / White / Canoe- $3 (12 inch)
- $7 (three feet)
- $11 (five feet)
River Birch- $55 (three feet)
- $80 (five feet)
Sweet / Cherry / Black- $30 (three feet)
Whitespire- $30 (three feet)
Yellow Birch- $12 (one foot)
Young's Weeping / European White
- $50 for 8. 75-gallon

Birch tree overview

Small to medium in size, these trees can grow up to 70 feet in length, with the leaves turning yellow in the fall.  With a wide range of sizes and forms, some may resemble a smaller shrub while others can be a much larger tree, providing shade for an area.  According to The Tree Center, there’s a birch tree variety that can grow fast or can quickly dominate a landscape.

The most common birch trees you will find at local nurseries will include the river birch, dura heat river birch, heritage river birch and white paper birch.  The river birch is best suited for hotter climates and is famous for its peeling bark that looks great year around.  The dura heat river birch is a popular ornamental tree that will be denser and greener in color.  Hardy for most zones, it’s fast growing, wind/ice resistant and creates beautiful butter-yellow leaves in the fall.  The heritage river birch grows more than two feet per year and is easy to grow in virtually any environment.  This birch tree can adapt to all soils, and when fully grown, it can provide quite a bit of shade.  Lastly, the white paper birch is one of the tallest varieties, growing up to 70 feet tall in some occasion.  Known for its peeling white bark and bright yellow flowers in the spring, this variety can also provide quite a bit of shade once fully grown.

What are the extra costs?

Shipping fees may apply if purchased at a nursery or online.

If you hire a professional to plant the tree for you, this will cost extra, and the costs will depend on the size of the tree.  The average professional planting, however, should be in the $50 to $100 range.

Tips to know:

Due to the shallow root system of a birch tree, it should be noted that this tree is very sensitive to heat and droughts.  It needs to consistently be kept moist and kept in cooler soil.  When planting, make sure the roots will be protected in the shade during the peak afternoon hours.

Birch trees need specific conditions to grow properly.  The trees should be planted in soil that has enough nutrients to accommodate the growth.  Make sure you apply organic fertilizers that can boost the growth of the trees as these trees often grow best in acidic and alkaline soils.

Avoid planting these trees underneath overhead wires.

These trees are susceptible to borers and other insects.  It is recommended that an insect control program is used.

Lower hanging branches that interfere with a sidewalk or driveway should be pruned.  Also, if the branches are dead or have some sort of disease, these branches should be pruned as well.

How can I save money?

It does not hurt to look for coupons during the planting seasons to see if there are any deals that you can take advantage of.

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River Birch For Sale Online

Birch trees have a special charm and beauty and the River Birch is a medium-sized tree that usually grows to around 40 feet or more in height. It will grow 2 feet a year, and even 3 feet a year in warmer areas, so it rapidly matures into an attractive specimen that will grow from zone 4 through zone 9. It has attractive peeling bark in many shades of pink, red and tan and makes a lovely picture in the garden, when in leaf and during the winter months too.

• Quick growing for new landscapes
• Perfect choice for damp and low-lying areas
• Wonderful decorative bark
• Easy to grow in any garden
• Best Birch tree for warmer areas

River Birch is especially useful for wet, clay soils and will even grow in flooded areas, as well as growing in regular garden conditions. If you are looking for a hardy, easy-to-grow tree that will fit into any garden and add charm all year round, or if you already know birch trees and need one for a hotter region, then the River Birch is an ideal choice.

Birch trees are charming and popular trees, notable mostly for their rapid growth and their attractive bark. Many people are familiar with the white-barked birches, but there are serious problems in growing them, mainly a nasty insect called the birch-borer, which burrows in the trunk and kills the tree. The native River Birch is, however, resistant to that insect and so lives much longer and will not suddenly die, as white birch do. It also has beautiful peeling bark, in many shades of pink, orange, tan and dark-red, making a colorful show in the garden, especially in winter and spring.

The River Birch is a popular native tree and because it is so adaptable and dependable it is often in high demand. We constantly receive new stock, but shortages can arise, so order now to avoid disappointment.

Growing River Birch Trees

The River Birch will quickly grow into a graceful tree with slightly pendulous branches and a unique lightness that only birch trees have. The beauty of their bark, their thin twigs and delicate hanging leaves all create a light and airy effect, quite different from denser trees like Maple. This means they are good choices for the smaller or medium-sized garden because they will not dominate the area or create a lot of dense shade that can be hard to grow other plants in. They will not cause damage with their roots so River Birch can be planted closer to buildings and sewage pipes than many other trees.

Climate and Hardiness

Most birch trees need cooler weather to do well, but the River Birch is happy in hot, humid weather, so it is an ideal choice if you live in a warmer area such as the the South, where other birch trees will not do well. It is hardy in zone 4, all the way into zone 9, so it can be grown almost anywhere.

Soil Conditions

The River Birch can be planted in heavy clay soil that is often wet and can even be planted in flooded soil, so it is an ideal choice for low-lying areas of your property, or along river banks. It will also grow in regular soil and does best in soil that is acid to neutral, and is not an ideal choice for alkaline soil. If you have that kind of soil, the Autumn Purple Ash is a good choice for an alternative tree.

Plant the River Birch as a single specimen, or as a beautiful group of 3 or 5 trees, since Birch always seem to look lovely in a group. This tree also makes a great fast-growing boundary tree to your property, or a wind-break. Because it thrives in wet conditions it is also great for preventing river-bank erosion.

History and Origins of the River Birch

The River Birch (Betula nigra) is an American native tree that grows naturally throughout the east, from New Jersey to Georgia and from Texas to Nebraska. It is usually found in swampy areas and low-lying regions subject to flooding. Other birch trees are found further north in colder areas and up into Canada, so the River Birch is unique in its heat-tolerance and ability to grow in warm regions. Although it does not occur naturally further north than zone 6, it is actually hardy right into zone 4, meaning that this tree will grow in gardens across the whole country except for southern Florida and southern California.

Appearance of the River Birch

The River Birch is a medium-sized tree that can reach 40 to 70 feet in height and be 25 to 50 feet across, but it is usually smaller, especially when grown in normal garden conditions. The largest sizes are reached when it has access to unlimited amounts of water. The main feature of this tree is the bark, which is an attractive pinkish-brown color and peels off in a picturesque fashion, revealing new, lighter-colored bark below and giving even young trees lots of character. Older trunks eventually become ridged and dark-brown in color.

The leaves are up to 3 inches long and 2 inches wide, a triangular-oval shape and pointed toward the tip. There are tiny soft teeth along the edges of the leaves. In fall the leaves turn a wonderful shade of soft yellow, like a glowing candle in the sun. Once your tree is a little older you will see it flowering in early spring, before the leaves. The flowers are tiny, in narrow clusters called ‘catkins’ that hang down and are 2 to 3 inches long. Although not showy they are interesting and add a charm to the tree as the seasons change.

Planting Your River Birch Tree

Choose a sunny location for your tree and place your tree at least 15 feet from a building, swimming pool or septic system and 8 feet from a driveway. If you are creating a group of River Birch, trees can be planted within 3 feet of each other to form a clump, or further apart, perhaps 10 feet, to make a grouping. For a boundary row or along a stream, allow 10 to 15 feet between trees, depending on how dense you want the row to be.

To Plant your River Birch, choose a location in damp soil and dig a hole that is three times the width of the pot and just a little deeper. Add some organic material to the soil you have removed from the hole and place your tree at the same depth it was in the pot. Replace most of the soil and firm it down well around the root-ball. Fill the hole with water and wait for it to drain away, and then replace the rest of the soil. Water your tree well every week for the first year and then when the soil becomes dry. The more water you give this tree the faster it will grow.

Black birch (Betula nigra): variety description


Before becoming Emperor of Mexico, Ferdinand Maximilian Joseph von Habsburg traveled across North America. Then, in the middle of the 19th century, he was struck by the rich nature of this continent, but he called the most beautiful American tree River birch in abundance covering the banks of rivers, wet valleys and edges of swamps.

Black birch (Betula nigra) *, it is also red, it is also river, the only birch in America whose range includes the south of the continent, the only birch whose seeds ripen in late spring. Due to this feature, it is believed that she does not create hybrids with other species, at least so far no one has recorded her connections with other close growing relatives.

It is the most thermophilic, but also the most painless of all birches.

It is popular in the landscaping of US cities, it is planted a lot and is loved for:

- soil tolerance - it grows well both in wet places, enduring even short-term floods, and in moderately dry ones;

- good health - it is not susceptible to most of the diseases and pests that other species suffer from;

- excellent resistance to urban conditions, in addition, it easily tolerates wind and "freezing" rain.

- beautiful peeling (curly) bark - a cocktail of stunning shades: you can find orange and rusty-red, creamy salmon, coffee and dark chocolate and even lavender tones in it.

- convenient size - relative compactness and roundness of the crown, finer, more refined appearance due to small pointed leaves. The leaves differ in color - dark above, lighter below, and this makes the crown more voluminous;

- good growth rate, which allows to achieve the desired effect in a short time;

- excellent compatibility (both biological and stylistic) with most other plants. As well as in nature, in artificial landscapes it grows well together with maples (sugar, red, yellow, ash-leaved), with alder, with red oak, moisture-loving poplars, American linden, willows, honey locust, hydrangea, derens, diervilla, etc. .d.

River birch is planted almost everywhere - from landscape river edges along streams and wetlands to ultra-modern areas with "glass and concrete". She can be both an accent and a good companion, singly and in groups, in public places and in intimate, cozy courtyards.

Thanks to the bark and the harmonious graphics of the branches, this birch is among the best ornamental plants for the leafless period - from late autumn to early spring.

The following varieties of black birch are popular in the USA:

'Cully' (= 'Heritage') The most popular variety with landscapers in the USA. It is considered to be superior to the species in terms of disease resistance, and also looks a little more tidy, with a slightly more regular crown shape. The bark is already bright and expressive at a young age.

'Little King' (= 'Fox Valley') is a relatively dwarf plant, not exceeding 4 meters in height in final size, with very dense branching and slow growth. The crown is rounded, the bark exfoliates as beautifully as that of the species. Used mainly as an accent or in hedges.

'Summer Cascade' is a weeping form of black birch. A low (6 x 4) tree with graceful thin weeping branches is planted near the water for a spectacular reflection, or on embankments and hills for an accent. Combined with the unique bark, it becomes a prominent landscape focal point even in winter.

All indicated varieties are given for the breadth of outlook, their stability in our conditions has not been tested. However, we emphasize that BLACK BIRCH (B. nigra) in itself is an excellent material for landscaping cities and for private areas, in addition, as a rule, the species is always more resistant than varieties.

This birch is well cut, only it is necessary to cut, of course, either before the start of sap flow, or deep after it.

We are pleased to announce that we offer her in our cattery.

Pay attention to this still rare species and plan it in your projects :)

* ATTENTION! Black birch is also often called Dahurian birch (B. davurica) - this is a completely different species, originally from the Far East.

Text by N. Melnikov, based on American sources.

BIRCH (lat. Betula platyphylla Sukacz)

Scientific classification







Betulaceae S . F. Gray





Flat birch

Betula platyphylla Sukacz

There are 24 birch species in the Far East. These are mainly large trees, but there are low and even creeping shrubs.

The most common birch is flat-leaved (1; 2)

Description. Flat-leaved birch - d tree with white or dark gray bark up to 30 m high; with a trunk diameter of up to 35-50 cm, young branches are red-brown in color, slightly hanging down;

The root system of birches is powerful, depending on the type and growing conditions, either superficial or, more often, goes obliquely deep. The tap root of the seedling dies off very quickly, but the lateral roots develop powerfully and are rich in thin uriculate roots.

In the early years. birch grows slowly, only then begins to grow rapidly, and this ensures its victory over competing herbaceous vegetation.

Bark . white or grayish-white, peeling off. The branches are not drooping (unlike the closely related type of drooping birch - Betula pendula), dark gray or dark brown, glabrous. Ends of young branches with sparse glands.

Leaves . Petiolate, glabrous, 4.5-10 cm long, 3-10 cm wide, ovate-rhombic, acute, truncated or broadly wedge-shaped at the base, doubly dentate-serrated along the edge.

Flowers collected in earrings (male and female). Outside, the entire earring is covered with a resinous substance impervious to moisture.

Flower in May,

Pl about ripen in September-October. The nuts are obovate, the wings are equal to or wider than the nut. (At the Birch the drooping wing is 2 times wider compared to the nutlet).

Life expectancy 100-150 years

P Distribution in the Far East (Amur Region, Magadan Region, Kamchatka, Primorsky Territory, Sakhalin), Northern China, North Korea, Japan (Hokkaido).

Plain Birch Birch Birch trees is common in Siberia (Krasnoyarsk Territory east of the Yenisei, Buryatia, Chita region, Yakutia),

A lot of songs, fairy tales, poems, and paintings are connected with birch in Russia. No wonder this tree is considered a symbol of Russia.

There is a tree, the color is green, in this tree there are four favors:

the first is for the sick to health,

the second is a well for people,

the third is light from darkness,

the fourth is swaddling for the decrepit.

An old Russian riddle has a very simple solution. Patients on health - a real pharmacy: a whisk, kidneys, leaves. Take a steam bath with a birch broom, prepare medicine from buds and leaves. To quench your thirst with birch sap is a well for people. Illuminate housing with the warm fire of a birch torch or heat a stove or fireplace with sonorous birch firewood - light from darkness. Tie birch bark baskets, baskets - decrepit swaddling.

Most birches are very hardy, do not suffer from spring frosts, tolerate permafrost, penetrate far beyond the Arctic Circle or form the upper forest line in the mountains.

Most of the birch trees are photophilous, although there are also quite shade-tolerant ones.

Many species of birch are pioneers in the settlement of clearings, burnt areas. In the future, the composition of the forest stand changes: birch is replaced by spruce, since spruce shoots can exist under a relatively light birch canopy, and young birches are shaded by spruces and die.

Many insects live on the birch, for example, caterpillar of lime hawk moth, birch moth, common raspberry. The stag beetle - the largest beetle in Europe - lives in the wood of birch and other deciduous trees. May beetles feed on birch leaves, and in some years, when their numbers are especially high, they can cause serious damage to trees.

Birch groves and forests mixed with birch are characterized by mycorrhizal fungal species, many of which live in communities exclusively or predominantly with birch. The most common and famous of them:

Pink volnushka, common birch boletus, white birch fungus - belongs to the most valuable edible mushrooms.

Injured trees may be attacked by parasitic fungi, such as the cut tinder fungus (Inonotus obliquus), which is rare on other trees. Preparations obtained from chaga, a barren form of tinder fungus, are used in folk and official medicine as adaptogens.

Birch is also characterized by specific types of fungi - the destroyers of dead wood (saprotrophic), which play an important role in the process of self-purification of forests from dead wood, windbreaks. Of these, birch tinder (Piptoporus betulinus) and birch tinder (Lenzites betulina) are common in birch groves, the former of which is not found on wood of other species, and the latter usually prefers birch.


Birch is of little use for buildings, as it soon rots due to the development of the fungus.

Heavy, dense birch wood is fairly strong and resists splitting well. The color is white, with a more yellow core. It is used for the manufacture of high-quality plywood, skis, small carved toys, butts of firearms.

Growths, occasionally formed on the roots, large branches or trunks of birches - burl - on the cut have a peculiar complex and beautiful pattern. The processed burl has long been used for the manufacture of elegant handicrafts: caskets, snuff boxes, cigarette cases, decorative furniture details.

Application .

Orthodox churches and dwellings are decorated with birch branches on the Day of the Holy Trinity.

Valued in ornamental horticulture for the beauty of the crown and delicate foliage. Sometimes used as a tapeworm in landscape design.

Leaves give yellow wool dye with alum.

In beekeeping, birch is important as a pollen carrier.

A birch torch was used in the old days to illuminate peasant huts - it burns brightly and almost without soot.

Birch brooms are harvested as livestock feed for the winter period.

Birch gives the best firewood.


During the dry distillation of birch bark, birch or birch tar is formed. Birch tar is used in medicine and veterinary medicine, mainly as an anti-inflammatory and antiseptic agent, it is part of tar soap and various ointments and creams used to treat skin diseases.

Birch bark has long been used in folk crafts for the manufacture of tuesks, baskets, boxes, buckets, baskets, other kitchen utensils, the simplest shoes (bast shoes), served as a material for writing (birch bark).

Birch bark is perfectly preserved in river sediments, peat bogs, thanks to which Academician V. L. Yanin discovered in Novgorod a whole treasure trove of ancient Russian manuscripts.

Many ancient Chinese and Sanskrit texts on birch bark are also known.

The peoples of the North and the Far East used birch bark to make boats and build dwellings - chums.

Birch sap

By the end of the vegetative period, birch trees accumulate nutrients, including sugar. In the spring, with the beginning of sap flow (before the leaves bloom), these substances begin to rise to the leaves.

If cuts are made on the trunk at this time, a significant amount of juice will flow out of them (apiary - a liquid released from cut vessels of wood stems or roots of living plants under the influence of root pressure), containing from 0.43 to 1.13% sugar . The phenomenon of leakage is observed after the first thaws; in the first days, the outflow is insignificant, but then gradually increases and, after reaching a maximum after a while, begins to gradually decrease, and by the time the buds open, it completely stops. The duration of the outflow of juice is several weeks.

Collecting birch sap exhausts the tree, besides, through wounds on the bark, pathogenic microorganisms can penetrate into living tissues, the tree can get sick and eventually die. In this regard, after collecting the juice, it is recommended to cover the damage on the bark with pitch or clay.

Birch sap is used to make various drinks. A large birch can give more than one bucket of juice per day.

Medical use

Birch has traditionally been used for medicinal purposes: infusions from birch buds and leaves - as a diuretic, bactericidal, wound healing and antipyretic agent, and an oil extract from birch buds - as a dermatological agent.

Birch brooms in Russia were traditionally used for therapeutic and prophylactic purposes in the Russian bath.

It was believed that the smell of birch cures melancholy and helps with the evil eye, and birch sap, collected on special days of March and April, purifies the blood.


When growing birches for decorative purposes, it should be taken into account that the proximity to them has a depressing effect on many plants. This happens for the following reasons:

birches usually grow faster than other trees;

birches dry up the soil;

During the decomposition of fallen birch leaves, substances are released that are growth inhibitors for some plants.

Young spruces, as well as many types of wild rose, get along well with birches in cultivation.

This is interesting

Pre-Christian symbols associated with the birch are known to many peoples who lived in the regions of distribution of this plant; this applies to the Celts, and to the ancient Scandinavians, and to the Slavs. For all these peoples, the birch was primarily a symbol of the transition from spring to summer and, in a broader sense, a symbol of death and resurrection.

Scandinavians and Finno-Ugric peoples (3)

Since the time of the tribal system, birch has been a cult tree and a national symbol for most Finno-Ugric peoples - Karelians, Vesi, Mansi, Khanty, Permyaks, Komi-Zyryans, Finns (sum) and Finns-tavasts (em), as well as a very revered national tree among the Scandinavians - Swedes and Norwegians.

Among the Scandinavians, the birch was a symbol of the goddess Nerta, who was considered the great Mother Earth.

Until now, in Central and Northern Sweden, "birch days" are celebrated between April 22 and May 1. At the same time, the so-called “May pole” is usually constructed, that is, a pole with a crossbar at the top, which is decorated, wrapped around with young birch branches and the first wildflowers, and this object, which actually replaces natural birch, becomes a center for gathering young people and various outdoor entertainments, reminiscent of this very ancient holiday, celebrated at the living, growing Sacred birch.

According to the ancient beliefs of the Mansi and Khanty, the Sacred Mother Birch, which belonged to the goddess Kaltas-Ekva, was golden-leaved and grew with seven silver trunks from one base.

Birch is one of the 22 trees included in the Celtic horoscope of the Druids (December 24 - January 20). In Celtic astrology, the Sun was identified with the Birch. The Celts buried the dead in hats made of birch bark.

In Slavic beliefs, the attitude towards birch was ambivalent: according to some traditions, wood and products made from it, including birch, were considered a talisman against evil spirits; in particular, birch brooms used in the bath were also considered as tools of ritual cleansing. According to other traditions, the birch was considered an unclean tree, in the branches of which devils and mermaids settle, and which is the embodiment of the souls of deceased relatives; birch was also considered a tree from which evil spirits make their tools - for example, witches, according to popular beliefs, fly on birch brooms.

On the old Russian women's ritual holiday - Semik, which was celebrated on Thursday in the seventh week after Easter, the girls went to the forest to “curl a birch”. Having chosen the trees, the girls curled them - they tied the tops of two young birch trees, bending them to the ground. Wreaths were woven from the branches. At the same time, they sang songs and walked in a round dance around a birch dressed with ribbons, bringing it to the village. When curling the wreaths, the girls made friends, or sisters: a cross was hung on birch branches tied in a circle, the girls kissed in pairs through this wreath, exchanged some things (rings, scarves) and after that they called themselves a godmother or sister.

Folk omens

A lot of sap flows from a birch in spring - by a rainy summer.

In autumn, the leaves of birch trees begin to turn yellow from the top - early spring, turn yellow from below - late.

If the birch is pubescent in advance, then wait for a dry summer, and if the alder is wet.

If there are a lot of earrings on the birches - by the harvest of peas

In the spring there is a good lobe on the aspen and birch - there will be vigorous bread.

If the leaves on the birch are thick and dark green (with an abundance of summer moisture) - to the harvest and tall bread


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