River birch is a good choice for the North or Central Florida gardener who wants a fast-growing tree.
River birch typically reaches about 35 feet in height, with a network of fine branches making up a narrow to oval-shaped crown. Its bark is extremely showy and peels off in attractive sheets of beige or creamy white, and the leaves are triangular. It adds nice color and interest to the winter landscape.
River birch can thrive in full or part sun, and can tolerate a variety of soils, although it prefers moist, even very wet areas. It’s moderately drought tolerant and requires little or no pruning, making it a fairly low-maintenance choice if located in the right spot. Look for the variety named ‘Duraheat’ for maximum success.