A low attractive shrub of wetlands with somewhat fuzzy new growth and leaves, Bog Birch is both rare and unusual-looking. Male and female flowers appear on the same plant, with the female flowers developing in April-May. The male catkins begin developing in late autumn, persist through the winter, and then finally produce wind blown pollen in the spring. Neither the male nor female catkins are especially showy, looking like small chartreuse and brown spikes. Seeds are produced from the female catkins, which merely appear to swell to form fruits that resemble small green alder cones (they turn brown when the seeds are mature). Leaves are smallish and somewhat leathery and fuzzy, making a very distinctive, pretty effect on adult plants. Twigs are red/maroon and new woody growth is fuzzy, although the twigs become smooth by their second year. Tolerant of acidic, poorly-drained conditions, sand, and sphagnum, often appearing in calcareous wetlands and the margins of larch bogs, as well as the alpine barrens of Labrador. More common in the western part of its range, where the Greater Prairie Chicken (Tympanuchus cupido - please look these birds up, they're incredible) use it as winter browse. Supports a wide variety of different types of insects, and its seeds support songbirds including chickadees, juncos, and finches. This species is particularly at risk from Glossy Buckthorn (Frangula alnus), a highly aggressive invasive shrub that grows vigorously in Bog Birch's preferred habitat.

Moist To Wet
Sun To Part Shade
4-12 foot tall
Plant Hardiness Zones: 2a-6a
Woody Shrub or Tree

Native Range: ME south to NJ and NY, OH to IA, ID and OR, native to all the northernmost states. Native to Canada in BC, AB, SK, MB, ON, QC, NB, NL, and NS. Rare in NH, MA, CT, NJ, NY, OH, IA, MT and ID. Considered extirpated in VT.)

Bog Birch - 2-3 foot in a quart pot $26.25 (Temporarily Sold Out*)

*We normally carry this item but are temporarily sold out. We expect to have it available again as soon as our plants in production reach sufficient size/maturity or we harvest more seed. In some cases, plants may be recovering from caterpillar damage (Monarchs love our Milkweed), wind or hail damage, rampaging woodchucks, downed trees, or other natural issues. We are constantly updating our web site so please check back again.

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