Betula alleghaniensis (formerly B. lutea)
- Clade: Eudicots/Rosids
- Order: Beech
- Family: Cupuliferae (Birch Family)
- 23 m (80’)
Yellow Birch trees have alternate, deciduous, double-serrated leaves. The 11 cm (4”) leaves on 2 cm long grooved petioles show pinnate venation, with 12-15 pairs of veins. The underside of the leaf has long hairs. The normally green leaves turn yellow in the fall.
Yellow Birch Bark shows a yellowish, orange-brown, bronze, or silvery colored bark. It peels in thin strips. Younger trees have reddish-brown glossy bark.
Young shoots are brownish-gray and pubescent.
Birch tree flowers are called catkins. Yellow Birch tree catkins, resembling caterpillars, appear on the tree from May-June. They later mature into cone-like structures that release seeds in autumn.
- Yellow birch bark will light on fire when wet
- Injured twigs smell like wintergreen
Yellow Birch trees grow in moist forests. They are shade tolerant.
- Common near Bay of Fundy