BETULA continued
last updated 20/10/2014


BETULA utilis 'Fascination'
See B. albosinensis 'Fascination'


BETULA utilis 'Cobhay Amber'

BETULA utilis 'Cobhay Sentinel'

NEW BETULA utilis 'Himalayan Pink'

BETULA utilis 'Nepalese Orange'

BETULA utilis ssp. utilis 'Bhutan Sienna'

BETULA utilis var. jacquemontii 'Buddha'

BETULA utilis var. jacquemontii 'Doorenbos'    
This is one of the original selections of Silver Birch. Often incorrectly known simply as Betula jacquemontii, this is the plant many people associate with the concept of winter bark interest.


BETULA utilis var. jacquemontii 'Fastigiate' 
As the name suggests, an upright, columnar selection giving a pillar of the beautiful white bark.


BETULA utilis var. jacquemontii 'Grayswood Ghost'
Fast becoming a classic amongst the Silver Birches, true plants of this cultivar have arguably the whitest bark of all. The leaves are larger than those of 'Doorenbos' and 'Snow Queen', and to be honest I find this cultivar less reliable. Spectacular yes, but not as easy to grow.

BETULA utilis var. jacquemontii 'Inverleith'
(syn. 'Edinburgh') This is a wonderful form of a classic tree. From Edinburgh Botanic garden, its habit is tidily and sturdily upright without being fastigiate, but the bark quickly starts to peel to reveal the gleaming white layers beneath. This happens first on the trunk, with the side branches taking some time to follow suit. Thus the result is a very distinctive two-tone effect. I like this one very much, though perhaps for slightly different reasons.

BETULA utilis var. jacquemontii 'Jermyns'
The vivid white bark of this vigorous, Hillier named selection is retained into maturity, whilst it has the added attraction of very long catkins (to 17cm). This one is also disticntive in habit. I have likened it to a "Conference Pear" in that it is considerably taller than it is wide, with it's greatest width at the bottom of the canopy, which gives it very different proportions to the classic white birch.

BETULA utilis var. jacquemontii 'Moonbeam'    
This selection is smaller growing than many cultivars, developing quite a rounded head though still with the beautiful white bark. I have been known to describe it as "short and fat" by comparison with some of the alternatives. Others that are worth considering for a more restricted space include 'Trinity College' (though this has good vigour and will gain good height quickly - "tall and thin" by comparison therefore) and 'Fastigiate' (this last one being the narrowest). If you really need to keep the size down, then I would recommend the largely unknown B. apoiensis 'Mount Apoi'.


BETULA utilis var. jacquemontii 'Silver Shadow'    
Another variation on a theme - this time selected at Hilliers. This one has an open habit and larger leaves, which combine with the dazzling white bark to give a very dramatic effect. However, I would put a similar caveat on this one as 'Grayswood Ghost' - this one has large leaves too, but there is also a noticeable indumentum (furriness) to the foliage and young stems and is more fickle to grow than some of the other cultivars.


BETULA utilis var. jacquemontii 'Snow Queen' 
A showy tree with a gleaming white trunk which is apparent from an early age. Some authorities say that this is the same as 'Doorenbos'...and for sure they are very similar. I have kept mine separate on the basis that once combined, they could never be told apart. Perhaps that is answer enough in itself. Whatever the case, the pair of them are arguably the best white birches when considering ease of culture and purity / intensity of bark colour.

BETULA utilis var. jacquemontii 'Trinity College'    
A newer selection notable for its smaller leaves and generally smaller growth habit. I love its compact and tidy shape, relatively tall and upright but neatly narrow without being overly fastigiate. The gleaming white trunk is apparent from an early age. Do understand that this is not a "dwarf" selection per se, it can develop prodigious height. Its advantage is its comparative lack of breadth.


NEW BETULA utilis var. 'Mt Luoji'

BETULA utilis var. occidentalis 'Kyelang' 
Pure white peeling bark as one would expect, but also the white resinous buds are conspicuous in winter. The late Kenneth Ashburner selected it from seed collected by the Indian Forestry Service in Kyelang, NW Himalaya in the mid 1970s.

BETULA utilis var. pratti 'Parkwood'

BETULA utilis 'Wakehurst Place Chocolate'    
This is something a little different. With its rich chocolate coloured bark, this is the darkest of the group. We have planted our collection of birch across a single hillside, and it is exciting to watch the different colours develop, enhancing each other to maximise their effect as they mature. 


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