Birch is a broadleaved deciduous hardwood tree of the genus Betula ( /ˈbɛtjʊlə/ Bé-tu-la), in the family Betulaceae which also includes alders, hazels and hornbeams and is closely related to the beech/oak family, Fagaceae. The genus Betula contains from 30 to 60 known taxa of which 11 are on the IUCN 2011 Red List of Threatened Species. They are typically rather short-lived pioneer species widespread in the Northern Hemisphere particularly in northern temperate and boreal climates.
Famous quotes containing the word birch:
“The birch begins to crack its outer sheath
Of baby green and show the white beneath....”
—Robert Frost (18741963)
“The birch stripped of its bark, or the charred stump where a tree has been burned down to be made into a canoe,these are the only traces of man, a fabulous wild man to us. On either side, the primeval forest stretches away uninterrupted to Canada, or to the South Sea; to the white man a drear and howling wilderness, but to the Indian a home, adapted to his nature, and cheerful as the smile of the Great Spirit.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)