At Native Forest Nursery we grow bare root seedlings and #3 container trees. Our container trees are grown in a #3 air pruned pot. This root making container eliminates nearly all potential for root wrapping. This allows for an excellent root structure and delivers an extremely healthy tree. The bare root seedlings at our nursery are grown in a sandy loam soil with high organic matter content, which provides an extremely healthy environment for our seedlings. Our bare root liners and seedlings are hand lifted, packaged, and kept in cold storage until you are ready to plant. Conservation uses for our products include reclamation, mitigation, reforestation, restoration, wildlife habitat improvement and wetland uses. Horticultural uses for our products include field liners, container liners, landscape plantings, budding stock, grafting stock and ornamental uses.

Family: Betulaceae
Latin Name: Betula nigra x Heritage
Foliage: Medium to dark green
Fall Foliage: Yellow
Bloom: Brown and green catkins; inconspicuous
Bloom Time: April to May
Shape: Rounded to irregular
Bark: Salmon outer and creamy inner
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Zone: Zone 4 to Zone 9
Size: 40 to 70 feet
Spread: 40 to 60 feet
Care: Medium to wet, well drained soil

Fast-growing, semi-aquatic, deciduous, and hardy, the Heritage River Birch—or Betula Nigra x Heritage—is native to the eastern portion of the United States, ranging from New Hampshire to Florida and extending westward to Minnesota and Texas. Relatively heat-tolerant as compared to the other birches of its Betulaceae family, the Heritage River Birch thrives best in medium to wet, well-drained soils and flourishes beneath full sun to partial shade. It has a 4-9 hardiness zone rating, and is regularly found around floodplains, swamps, riverbanks, and meadows. It does not prefer urban or dry areas; these trees grow faster and live longer in riparian regions.

The most characteristic feature of the Heritage River Birch is probably its colorful mottling bark, known to illuminate even a drab wintery landscape. This, too, constitutes the primary difference between the Heritage River Birch and other silvery-barked birch tree varieties. Its bark has a distinct cinnamon-orange or salmon-pink coloring, reveals a cream-colored interior, and, as it ages, it sheds its papery sheets of bark even more vigorously than its counterparts. Like the regular River Birch, the Heritage River Birch’s inconspicuous brown and green catkins bloom from April to May, and its green foliage lightens to warm yellow hues in autumn.

A mature Heritage River Birch can grow up to 40-70 ft. with a rounded or irregular crown. Its span may encompass 40-60 ft., so it thrives best when given its space; it shouldn’t be planted near homes, driveways, or patios, as it can have protruding root growth and would demand periodic pruning. Due to its durability, beauty, and fast growth, the Heritage River Birch is ideal as an ornamental landscape tree, and is valuable as a source of erosion control. Its timber, too, is highly preferred because of its workability; birch wood is universally used for veneer and plywood, and is also commonly used for furniture, paneling, interior trimming, doors, and small specialty wood items.

Renowned for its beautifully soft and delicately unfurling bark, its graceful drooping branches, and its unusual coloring, the Heritage River Birch has often been celebrated as a favorite species—an opinion upheld even by Prince Maximilian of Austria, who spotted the Birch on his tour of the United States and hailed it as “the most beautiful of trees”.

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