Betula pendula 'PURPUREA'

Betula pendula
Betula pendula 'PURPUREA'
purple birch
SIZE/TYPE small tree
USUAL HEIGHT 4-5m
USUAL WIDTH 2-4m
LEAVES deciduous broadleaf
COLOUR OF LEAVES burgundy red
FLOWERS insignificant or non-blooming
LOCATION full to partial sun
SOIL TYPE any (acidic to alkaline)
SOIL MOISTURE REQUIREMENTS evenly moist (dislikes drought)
USDA zone (lowest) 2   (down to -45°C)
WINTER PROTECTION  
FOR ZONE 5+6 Code of winter protection zone 5+6
FOR ZONE 7 Code of winter protection zone 7
BELONGS TO CATEGORIES Deciduous broadleaf
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Purpurea is a red-leaved variety of European silver birch found in France in 1872. The species is named pendula which might make us believe it should be weeping but it is not. It refers to thin young branches which are so lightweight that they weep but only until the following year when they harden straighten up. The framework is always upright with a strong leader and forms a narrowly pyramidal tree. It commonly grows about 4-5 meters tall in gardens and twice as much in parks and arboretums where it has more space for roots.

Purpurea birch is valued for its diamond-shaped to triangle-shaped leaves which emerge bright maroon with coppery hues and mature to dark maroon-brown in summer. During the hottest weeks they may turn dark green with maroon hues only. The bark is light grey with occasional purple red highlights.

Birch loves moisture but is widely adaptable and will grow in almost any soil. It will even tolerate spells of drought once established and copes will with exposed locations. It only detests roadsalt. Fully hardy to min. -45 °C (USDA zone 2).

Last update 10-01-2009; 19-01-2021
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GLOSSARY
  • STANDARD QUALITY - Plants of this group are 1st class quality with number of branches and overall density adequate to their size and age, considering they were container grown.
  • DE LUXE QUALITY - This label guarantees a luxurious quality of manually selected plants that, compared to their height and age, are exceptionally dense and beautiful.
  • EXTRA - These plants are usually mature and bigger specimens with exceptional overall appearance.
  • STANDARD (as described in the plant form) means a tree with a trunk of 190-210 cm and a crown at the top, unless specified differently. The commercial size for trees is their girth measured in the height of 1m from ground.
  • HOBBY - These plants are of the same quality as our standard-quality plants but younger and therefore cheaper.
  • SHRUB - a woody plant with branches growing bushy from the ground level.
  • HALF-STANDARD or MINI-STANDARD - a small tree with shorter trunk, its size is usually specified.
  • FEATHERED - These are trees with branches growing already from the base of the trunk and up along the stem.
  • GRASSES and PERENNIALS - Sizes given usually read the diameter of the pot or the clump, as specified.
LARGE PLANTS over 150 cmspecimens, screening and hedging shrubs

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