Betula glandulosa

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American dwarf birch
Betula glandulosa ÖBG 2012-05-28 01.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Fagales
Family: Betulaceae
Genus: Betula
Subgenus: Betula subg. Chamaebetula
B. glandulosa
Binomial name
Betula glandulosa

Betula glandulosa, the American dwarf birch, also known as resin birch or shrub birch, is a species of birch native to North America, occurring in arctic and cool temperate areas from Alaska east to Newfoundland and southern Greenland, and south at high altitudes to northern California, Colorado, and the Black Hills of South Dakota in the west,[1] and locally south to northern New York in the east. In the Arctic it occurs down to sea level, while in the south of the range, it grows as high as 3,400 metres (11,200 ft) altitude.

American dwarf birch is a multi-stemmed shrub typically growing to 1–3 m (3.3–9.8 ft) tall, often forming dense thickets. The trunks are slender, rarely over 5–10 cm (2–4 in) diameter, with smooth, dark brown bark. The leaves are nearly circular to oval, 0.5–3 cm (141 18 in) long and 1–2.5 cm (38–1 in) broad, with a toothed margin. The fruiting catkins are erect, 1–2.5 cm (38–1 in) long and 5–12 mm (3161532 in) broad.

It is closely related to the dwarf birch (Betula nana), and is sometimes treated as a subspecies of it, as B. nana subsp. glandulosa. It is distinguished from typical B. nana by the presence of glandular warts on the shoots and longer leaf petioles. Hybrids with several other birches occur.


  1. ^ "Betula glandulosa". County-level distribution map from the North American Plant Atlas (NAPA). Biota of North America Program (BONAP). 2014.

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