Also called ◼︎ black birch and ♒︎ water birch.  Part of birch  genus Betula in alder / birch / hazel / hornbeam  family Betulaceae and bayberry / beech / birch / oak / walnut  order Fagales.

Native to central, eastern and southeastern 🇺🇸 USA.

Uses by native peoples
(Ethnobotany database)
  Despite its nickname, the aircraft Spruce Goose was built primarily of birch wood, with small amounts of maple, poplar, balsa, and, yes, spruce.

Betula hosts caterpillars of 413 species
of butterflies and moths, in some areas.
  Planting info (SW Michigan) (.pdf).

Learn more about ♒︎ river birch Betula nigra

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