Arboretum - Baltics (2/12)
Betula pubescens · Latvia
Betula pubescens, commonly known as white birch, is a species native in northern Europe and northern Asia, growing farther north than any other broadleaf tree • It is a pioneer species which establishes itself readily in new areas away from the parent tree. This allows other woodland trees to become established and the birch, a short-lived tree, eventually gets crowded out as its seedlings are intolerant of shady conditions. The inner bark can be turned into charcoal favored by artists. It can be tapped in spring to obtain a sugary fluid. This can be consumed fresh, concentrated into a syrup similar to maple syrup, or can be fermented into an ale or wine. In the former USSR, birch sap is harvested commercially.