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Genus: Betula (birches)

Life > eukaryotes > Archaeoplastida > Chloroplastida > Charophyta > Streptophytina > Plantae (land plants) > Tracheophyta (vascular plants) > Euphyllophyta > Lignophyta (woody plants) > Spermatophyta (seed plants) > Angiospermae (flowering plants) > Eudicotyledons > Core Eudicots > Rosids > Eurosid I > Order: Fagales > Family: Betulaceae

About 60 species, native to the Northern Hemisphere. Eleven species have been recorded as being cultivated in southern Africa.

Species cultivated in southern Africa

List from Glen (2002).

Betula albosinensis (Chinese birch)

Native to western China.


Betula alleghaniensis (Yellow birch)

Native to North America.


Betula maximowicziana (Monarch birch)

Native to Japan.


Betula nana (Dwarf birch)

Native to north circumpolar regions.


Betula nigra (Red birch, River birch)

Native to North America.


Betula papyrifera (Paper birch)

Native to North America.


Betula pendula (Silver birch)

Native to Europe. Also includes Betula pendula 'purpurea' (Purple birch).


Betula platyphylla

Native to east Asia.


Betula populifolia (Grey birch)

Native to eastern Canada and USA.


Betula pubescens (Downy birch)

Native from Spain to Siberia.


Betula utilis (Himalayan birch)

Native from Afghanistan to China.




  • Glen, H.F. 2002. Cultivated Plants of Southern Africa. Jacana, Johannesburg.


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