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Silver Birch bark

I planted a couple of Silver Birch trees a year ago, and would like to encourage white bark.  One tree has obliged my attempts of peeling, but the other tree is proving more difficult to peel.  Any suggestions - I don't want to use a knife - would a damp scrubbing brush help?


  • Silver surferSilver surfer Posts: 4,709
    Only certain sp of Birch have the pure white bark.
    Then it develops with age.
    i wouldn't  recommend peeling the bark.
    Keen gardeners do do out to wash the trunks!
    Perthshire. SCOTLAND .
  • RubytooRubytoo Posts: 1,586
    Are they the same cultivar?
    Leave well alone it will happen...don't you have enough to be doing with feeding H-hogs and keeping Echiums upright. :)
  • HelixHelix Posts: 631
    I have been know to wash my smaller birch no poking fun please!

    Yes, leave it be to happen naturally.  Unless of course it’s a non-peeling variety in which case it won’t!
  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053
    What variety is it @Guernsey Donkey2 ? There are some varieties grown specifically for their white bark but if it is just a common birch tree, it will get white bark as it grows older - a LOT older. If you really really want a pure white stem on a tree that size, assuming it is just any old birch, you could put a coat of whitewash on it...……...
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • The Silver Birch we have is called Snow Queen - the clue is in the name - so does it's now pale brown trunk automatically turn white without any intervention.  Yes, I know I have lots to do already @Rubytoo , but this trunk is just calling out to be white - with or without my help.
  • RubytooRubytoo Posts: 1,586
    It must be a bit annoying when one has gone as it should , but not the other.
    Wonder if the weather as well as position has made it slower, compared to the other one.

    On a few sites it says the young ones have rich brown bark which changes as the tree matures. As other posters have already said about waiting, I would go with their advice, but understand your eagerness to make it white.
    So far I have not seen any suggestions to hurry it up while looking online.

    One made a reference to the trunk size in that they do not get white bark until the trunk is an inch in circumference?
    But I would imagine it is a bit subjective.

    @Muddle-Up you made me laugh about the not being able to resist.

    I have to say I have silvery birch envy. I would really like one or three. There is just no space here for another tree.

    Good Luck with it though I hope it changes soon for you before you go mad :D

  • I have two snow queens which I choose because they have white bark quite early on but your tree looks quite young so be patient.
    I wouldn’t wash the trunk yet it might damage it and I don’t think you would get the result of a white bark.
    I started washing the trunks of mine after they got a white trunk not before.

  • matt_fendermatt_fender Posts: 169
    @Chrissy the gardener your tree looks great! Can I ask how old it is? I too am a member of the Snowqueen gang - I put one in over winter last. Still just a whip really, and no sign of white bark yet of course, but curious to know how long it will be until it gets to the size of yours.
  • Thanks for all your comments and @Chrissy the gardener with a wonderful picture of your Snow Queen, which looks to be a year or two older than mine (I have two - planted approx 18 months ago).  There is hope for my Snow Queen yet then - as I have mentioned one trunk is easy to peel, the other more stubborn - I won't force it, but every few weeks I have a little tinker with it, just to help it along.....
  • Thanks for the nice comments,
    i planted this tree about eight years ago and it was a three year old tree then.
    Ive planted a multi stem snow queen at the beginning of this year, it was a field grown three year old tree and it is just showing colour.

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