Himalayan Birch Trees (Betula utilis Jacquemontii)

These beautiful Himalayan Birch Trees are grown for their brilliant white bark (which should begin to develop within a year or two from planting) that is particularly eyecatching in the winter months. The foliage of this popular deciduous tree is medium sized and mid green through the summer months before turning to hues of golden yellow in autumn. After the leaves fall the full beauty of the stem colour is revealed.

From expeditions in the early nineteenth century Himalayan Birch Trees or Betula Utilis Jacquemontii were discovered growing high up in the Himalayan mountains hence its common name of Himalayan Birch. It takes great benefit from the summer melting snow on the slopes and so is a very hardy deciduous shrub or single or multi-stemmed tree. Like other birches of the family Betulaceae they have many uses, as the word ‘Utilis’ denotes , for parts of the plant some dating back centuries. The bark to this day is still used in such places as Kashmir as writing paper for sacred purposes, this is a practise which dates back to the 8th or 9th century.

As well as paper the bark has also been used in days gone by for the manufacture of clothing and currently for making bandages and umbrella covers. In these days of environmental issues stocks of Jacquemontii Birch are being steadily depleted by constant use of the timber for firewood although some is still used in the construction of bridges. The foliage of the Himalayan Birch is quite often used as fodder for animals and herbal medicines are made from various parts of the tree.

Because of its origins Jacquemontii Birch is a very tolerant tree or large shrub able to cope with fairly adverse conditions. It thrives in damp areas as long as the soil which can be clay, chalk, loam or sand ,is well drained bearing in mind it originated from mountain slopes with snow melt. Its best effect is to be planted as a group to accentuate the magnificent white bark and the green foliage which appears in spring along with the delicate catkins will turn pale yellow in autumn. Himalayan Birch will attain a height of up to 18 metres and a spread of up to 8 metres.

Betula Utilis Jacquemontii is supplied as a sturdy pot grown plant therefore unlike the bare root plants which are only available when they are dormant between November and March the pot grown specimens can go in to the ground any time of year so whenever you have the soil prepared you can go ahead. If they are delivered and you are not quite ready then just keep the plants watered until you are.

Any assistance you may need regarding your choice of Himalayan Birch Trees, ground preparation or any other query you may have then do please ring us and one of our team will endeavour to help.