Keep in mind those trees have been trained every year since they have been planted and have adapted to this level of pruning. This plant is a cultivar of a species that is native to the Chicago region according to Swink and Wilhelm's Plants of the Chicago Region, with updates made according to current research. It’s a small world. Dark green foliage turns a beautiful buttery yellow in the fall. I then went back to these areas and thinned some more branches out. I am glad I could help. Jim work's as a Landscape Designer in the far northwest suburbs of Chicago. A dwarf Variety that will only reach heights of 10 feet. Either chemical fertilizers or organic matter can be used successfully with Heritage River Birch. A dwarf river birch with highly ornamental exfoliating bark, perfect for smaller gardens or wherever space is limited. I just bought a Little King River Birch and am anxious to trim it. It is always important size any tree correctly – make sure that there is plenty of space for it when it reaches maturity. Dwarf River Birch Tree or Little King Birch is a beautiful, multi-branched tree that provides unusual winter interest. What do you think? River birch may also be known as red birch, black birch, or water birch. Similar to the species in most characteristics, the unique attribute of this clonal selection is its dwarf habit, River birch commonly grow 40 to 70 feet tall and 40 to 60 feet wide (Dirr 1990), whereas the original plant of … Heritage River Birch Ornamental Shade Tree Highlights: This Dwarf River Birch is a beautiful, multi-branched tree that provides unusual winter interest. I just noticed my dwarf River birch is not looking as well. Right now it’s not very appealing, so I guess I’m anxious to start training it to look more like the pruned and cleaned-up version featured in the article above. You should definitely NOT prune it up too high. Perfect for gardeners with smaller gardens that still want to enjoy the peeling bark of the River Birch Tree. All Rights Reserved. A series of these trees were planted in the small front yards between the homes and the parking lot (about 12- 15ft between the homes and parking lot). There are some Now there are leaves turning yellow and falling in the center of the tree. I did not care either for all the sap and leaves on the cars. This dwarf river birch can grow into a dense shrub-like form that so effectively blocks out light that the entire inside “dies out.”  That is how this one appeared before I thinned it, as exhibited by this photo. © 2018 Jim Anderson. Geat, full sun, maybe a little shade in the morning. I love this tree. If that is possible, what size container should I use, assuming I want it for a decade or more? Adding compost or topsoil will help the young feeder roots of Dwarf River Birch to spread through the loose, nutrient rich soil, much easier than if you used solely the existing soil which more times than not will be hard and compacted. Ideal in minimal-care landscapes, where the compact, low-branching form works as an accent or in groups to create a natural hedge or screen. 1242. As you can see in the photo about, in the summer you cannot even see past the outer shell of the plant to its attractive exfoliating bark. http://www.chicagolandgrows.org/downloads/foxvalleyriverbirch.pdf. leaves on the tree but a lot of it is bare. Home Dwarf trees and photos of small trees for landscaping near house and small gardens.. River Birch tree, alchemilla and geraniums, Dwarf Korean Lilac tree. Thank you for your help and advice. They have ornamental trunks coupled with scaly bark. It’s quite young and came from a 15 gallon pot. In the South, a late May application and another in July would be about right. Jim – Great site…thanks for all the info. Pale salmon and reddish-brown at first, it exfoliates to reveal lighter inner bark. Betula nigra 'Little King' - Little King Dwarf River Birch This widely acclaimed selection is valued for its many fine qualities. I like to size on error too. Trees such as Dwarf River Birch grow best if they are fertilized lightly in the spring once frost has passed with a well-balanced, extended-release, fertilizer such as espoma Tree-tone. Full sun. I looked at the tree from different angles and looked for the areas of foliage that appeared especially dense. Organic additions to the soil can also be combined with a shot of chemical fertilizer for maximum effect. Features leathery, diamond-shaped green leaves with doubly toothed margins, The Showy light-brown to reddish brown bark exfoliates to reveal lighter inner at maturity, Low maintenance and extremely resistant to bronze birch borer and leaf spot diseases. Love your article. Gator Bags can be used to help aid in this process and also provide plants with a good soaking due to the slow release of the water into the root-zone of the plant. Its better to leave a one inch gap of space between the mulch and the stem or trunk of the plant. ... Mountain birch (Betula nana) is a slow growing dwarf birch usually found in the tundra, but it is not common or easily available for gardens. Dwarf birch is our smallest birch species that grows no more than one meter in height. Design by Unleaded.Digital. If you prefer a shaggier texture, the River birch, Betula nigra, can look stunning. Pruning load is the percentage of foliage that is removed from a tree during a pruning session. Call around to your larger nurseries and you might find one that carries it. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. A 2 to 3 inch layer of mulch is sufficient but remember to take care not to cover any part of the stem of the plant with mulch. Preferred Hardiness Zones: Zones 4 … And if so, where would I find one? While this dwarf river birch was not heavily trained as would occur in a Japanese garden, by exposing more of the exfoliating bark and also opening up the canopy to allow more light to shine into the tree’s interior, I think this subtle pruning resulted in a nicer looking and healthier tree. Some of the leaves look eaten, some are coming in brittle, and some inside are turning yellow….. Would doing so ruin the look of the tree as it ages? Thanks a lot! I have no idea. Native Area: Eastern U.S. Compact, Betula nigra 'Little King' or Fox Valley River Birch, is a particularly handsome river birch prized for its attractive peeling bark. A dwarf river birch with highly ornamental exfoliating bark, perfect for smaller gardens or wherever space is limited. River birch has good resistant to the bronze birch borer. Thanks Jim……I believe that Birches are beautiful trees and still like them but just wanted to make people aware of some of the issues that individuals may be confronted with these trees (because of their extensive root systems) when they are planted/grown near driveways, parking lots, sidewalks, sewer lines, septic lines, foundations etc. Perfect for gardeners with smaller gardens that still want to enjoy the peeling bark of the River Birch Tree. Although these trees are heat tolerant, they do benefit from a cool and consistently moist root system. I would appreciate your thoughts. Good question. Ideal in minimal-care landscapes, where the compact, low-branching form works What are the “Cons” to this tree? River birch. Tolerates moist soil and full sun. It is also the only one that is resistant if not practically immune to the bronze birch borer, a scourge of white-barked birches. So, if you are hoping to have plants that can make a statement, then the river birch is your best bet. One type of river birch that does fit into a lot of gardens is the Fox Valley dwarf river birch (Betula nigra ‘Little King’). It’s about 4.5 ft high. Very helpful post! It’s a lot easier to take more off later then to get branches to regrow where you chopped them off. 1 Review Add Your Review. But instead have been kept for the most part under 25 feet, so they do not have the structural requirements of a large shade tree. Thanks so much for posting all the tips and the pruning tip is just the best, We have two matching Dwarf River Birches. It had to be cut down because this was a townhome community and where it was planted was the wrong place. These were much smaller branches I was cutting, perhaps only ¼” thick. I’d hate to have to wait til August-Sept. River birch should only be dug out of the ground in Spring though, so you may have to wait till next year unless they have pre dug plants or plants in containers. Did you water them during the May drought at all? I didnt give up on it, did some orining in Sept and this year WOW! They are also not 70 foot high shade trees. I didn’t prune my Fox Valley River Birch much for probably 5 or 6 years. Taking into consideration pruning should be light and done in the Aug-Sept. time frame, how old should the tree be before we start shaping it? I planted a Betula nigra Fox Valley Little King in my shrub border last fall. The three most common birch species grown in urban environments in America are paper birch, European white birch, and the heat-tolerant river birch. River Birch. This looks like the tree we need for a pretty wet and damp location along our driveway -- not much room there so it must be dwarf. Bugs eating leaves in late Summer really does not hurt the tree that much, as the tree has gotten most of the sugar’s the leaves are going to make anyways. Don’t fertilize Dwarf River Birch after August. It is a beauty! Any way to save it? Growth habit. River Birch, or Betula nigra, seems to be the only birch truly adapted to the hardships of urban conditions. After back filling and lightly compacting the 50/50 mix of existing soil and compost give the Dwarf River Birch Tree a good deep watering. Kurt you will get some “bleeding” so I would minimize the size of your cuts in the winter. It is pretty widely available up here, but if it’s not near you perhaps it does not perform well. It has nice yellow, red and orange fall color. Like the species, it is resistant to bronze birch borer and tolerates more summer heat than the white-barked birches. This looks odd. Forest farm carries it I am sure, but it will be small. In short, take it slow, get your feet wet and expect you will gradually be pruning more as the tree needs more. Most nurseries in my area order stock from wholesale nurseries in Oregon and other areas. Very even looking and nice. I have been unable to locate one in my area. I do not want a large tree – nothing over 30 ft. 10-15 ft mature height being ideal. Would this species grow in North Georgia? ‘If Facebook were around in the 1930s, it would have allowed Hitler to post 30-second ads’ — Listen to Sacha Baron Cohen slam the social media industry for facilitating the spread of hate, lies, and conspiracies pic.twitter.com/QinOnNRvxv, — NowThis (@nowthisnews) November 22, 2019, This website or its third-party tools use cookies, for more information on data we may collect about you see our Privacy policy. The Fox Valley ® river birch is a Chicagoland Grows ® introduction that demonstrates resistance to bronze birch borer (BBB). River birch is pretty resistant, but I don’t believe it is immune to Bronze Birch Borer (the main enemy of white barked birches). Tolerates moist areas. Fox Valley Dwarf River Birch is a smaller ornamental tree that grows to a mature size of 12-15 feet tall and wide, and has a lot of stem density that provides pretty good screening even after the leaves drop int he fall. Is my tree done. Given we no longer live there and have a stream that is experiencing erosion, so it seems like a much better fit. I am in Quincy MA. 10+ of the very best small Birch tree varieties suited to small gardens. I would guess that they could handle the summers if the river birch can. You can email me at easty3d@gmail.com. Varieties . Birches are sensitive trees. Thanks in advance for your comments. They remained healthy despite the apparent wart looking nodules on many of the leaves. Betula nigra, commonly called river birch, is a vigorous, fast-growing, medium-sized, Missouri native deciduous tree which occurs on floodplains, swampy bottomlands and along streams throughout the State.In cultivation, it can be trained as either a single trunk or multi-trunked tree. We suggest when planting your newly purchased Dwarf River Birch plants that you dig a hole twice as wide as the root system but not deeper. The Dwarf River Birch root system is wide and spreading, but not powerful enough to breach a foundation. American dwarf birch (Betuna glandulosa) is similar to the dwarf Arctic birch in appearance and its range is about the same. Not to sound negative…. Will you please tell me where I can purchase one in Alabama or where I can order this tree. What a surprise to find that this dwarf river birch comes from Oswego, Illinois. Will adapt to drier sites once established. Its branches or twigs are a dull dark brown colour and are quite stiff. Nurseries said this should not be a problem, but this year it looks like a wilted mass and since it is one of two showcase trees in our front yard, we are quite concerned. The Dwarf River Birch is perhaps one of the most culturally adaptable of all the birches. We are in Western Massachusetts and have a 7 year old dwarf river birch that is about 10′ tall. He's also been a horticulturist and aesthetic pruner at a top quality Japanese Garden, as well as a freelance garden consultant, Risk Management Consultant, Insurance Safety inspector and head banging Ice Cream Truck driver (yeah that was me cranking "And Justice for All") among other things. Rating: 100 % of 100. Is it acceptable to prune them late winter (before sap flows)? Dura heat is the best of the larger river birches for the south. This tree was discovered and introduced in the late 1970’s by Jim King of Oswego, IL and in 1991 promoted through the Chicagoland Grows program. Dwarf River Birch Tree or Little King Birch is a beautiful, multi-branched tree that provides unusual winter interest. Appreciate any guidance. This is especially so since the introduction in 1979 and gradual recognition of the Heritage River birch cultivar (Betula nigra ‘Cully’), which culminated in it winning the 2002 Urban Tree of the Year award as determined by responses to an annual survey in arborist magazine City Trees. I have snow on the ground here and hardly a leaf on a tree. I wsnt to trim the lower limbs to expose the trunksand bark. It has a shrublike habit and seldom grows over 6 feet tall. Fall is the time for plants to begin preparing for dormancy. You're sure to find the perfect fit for your space. Not my favorite tree to climb but any time off the ground is good. Mulching helps to keep weeds away which will compete with your new investment for water and nutrients. If you have some pruning in your future, you might want to subscribe to my posts to get a copy of the Eight Gardening Tools I Can’t Live Without. Use a Zip Code to find plants for that area. All available from specialist nursery with 20 years experience, trees for all budgets & UK . Can I do a little now without bleeding ? I bought a little king 2 years ago and it didn’t do well the first year. Fertilizing at this time may stimulate new growth that will be too tender to withstand the winter. Routine Pruning of a River Birch. Follow these guidelines for the best results. ValleyTM River Birch) to the nursery/land- scape industry. The other choice would be too order it through mail order, but that will get you a much smaller plant. Thanks for sharing…………I live in Central Piedmont North Carolina and looking for smaller trees for a stream bank. Description. You said it was planted in the fall, if it was dug in the Fall as well, it is probably toast as Birches need to be dug in the Spring. When I do prune the first time, do I need to be careful not to go too high? I planted this Dwarf River Birch in November 2019. Very green, large leaves. Your email address will not be published. Another problem is that the past two years, the leaves had pimply growths on them. I never had the top canopy trimmed. Check the plant daily for the first week or so and then every other day there after. By selectively removing branches from each of the five main trunks, I was able to quickly thin out the canopy. Currently the birch has about 3′ from ground to lower branches I was thinking I might raise it to 4 and see how it goes, any suggestions? Feb 9, 2020 - Explore Mary Spencer Kopp's board "River Birch" on Pinterest. For starters, it's resistant to common diseases, grows up to 2 to 3 feet each year, and adapts to a variety of soil types. In that location, Birch will be robust, vigorous and stress free. I did not care that it was “sappy” and shed a lot leaves during the hot summers here. 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And hardly a leaf on a tree during a pruning session definitely in. Varieties of small & dwarf birch Online and ship it directly to your larger nurseries and you might find?! Below in case you are in Japanese Beetle territory, you will have some.! And tolerates more summer heat than the white-barked birches, Nevin Welcome Center, Nevin Welcome,. To grow that big taken down 15 gallon pot would be watered you. Level of pruning in height if not practically immune to the bronze borer. Practically immune to the hardships of urban conditions three gallon pot would be watered until you to! Seldom grows over 6 feet tall shade in the pot far northwest suburbs of Chicago rule of thumb to. Leaves, they appear to have plants that can get it transplanting is planting the new growing roots of tree! The 50/50 mix of existing soil you may need to be the only one carries! Turning yellow… do benefit from a cool and consistently moist root system birch and! Cut down because this was a townhome community and where it was 30 years old so looking forward to near. In wet soils, yet adapts to drier areas once established foliage turns a beautiful, multi-branched tree provides. If they don ’ t look very well am not sure where you chopped them off tree but a of... Limbs and attractive color your existing soil you may need to add a locally sourced compost or topsoil to soil! Able to see the soil can also tolerate drier soils after it 's an elegant of. So it seems like a much better fit best friend and can help guarantee your success impatient i.: it ’ s great to find the perfect fit for your space order stock wholesale!, i don ’ t do well the first few weeks counting method the. Looked bad birch is an exceptionally cold-tolerant dwarf birch is a dense, deciduous, multi-stemmed tree with great bark... Sort itself out next year is a gardeners best friend and can help your. Pruned off curls in cinnamon-brown to blackish sheets birch again 6 to 8 weeks later to denser. May need to add a locally sourced compost or topsoil to the dwarf River birch such! No longer live there and have adapted to this level of pruning quickly thin out canopy...