Birch Tree Pest and Disease Information

What is a Birch Tree?

Birch species are generally small to medium-size trees or shrubs, mostly of temperate climates. The simple leaves may be toothed or pointed. The fruit is a small samara, although the wings may be obscure in some species. They differ from the alders in that the female catkins are not woody and disintegrate at maturity, falling apart to release the seeds, unlike the woody cone-like female alder catkins.

The bark of all birches is characteristically marked with long horizontal lenticels, and often separates into thin papery plates, especially upon the Paper Birch. It is practically imperishable, due to the resinous oil which it contains. Its decided color gives the common names gray, white, black, silver and yellow birch to different species.

The buds form early and are full grown by midsummer, all are lateral, no terminal bud is formed; the branch is prolonged by the upper lateral bud. The wood of all the species is close-grained with satiny texture and capable of taking a fine polish; its fuel value is fair.

The leaves of the different species vary but little. All are alternate, doubly serrate, feather-veined, petiolate, and stipulate. They often appear in pairs, but these pairs are really borne on spur-like two-leaved lateral branches.

Birch Tree pests.

Insert pests that normally attack the white or silver birch trees are called spittle bugs, aphids, and the birch leaf miner. Spittle bugs and aphids feed on the sap of the birch tree and cause leaf loss.

Watering is also needed after you transplant the tree. During the spring, summer, and fall months besure to keep the soil around your new tree moist. The most important part of a walnut tree is making sure that the roots are kept moist. You will be able to tell if the tree is not receiving enough water by the leafs. If they begin to droop and crack, your tree is in need of water.

Birch Tree disease.

Fungal diseases can result in leaf spot, leaf blisters and leaf rust and tend to leave spots on the leaves. Dieback and canker are other common fungal diseases. Canker appears as a swelling where branches have been broken off. The swelling expands, cutting off supply of water to the branch or trunk and eventually death. Proper pruning can get rid of branches with canker.