5 facts about birch that you should know before planting it on the site

According to popular belief, it is not recommended to plant a birch near the house, therefore, a white-trunk tree can rarely be seen as an element of landscape design in the local area. The not-so-good reputation of the tree is associated not only with superstition and prejudice, but also with quite objective reasons.

Growing fast

Birch is a large tree that quickly grows not only in height up to 30-40 m, but also reaches 1.5 m in girth. Its root system and crown grow rather quickly. And if the roots can damage the foundation of a nearby house, gradually destroying it, or damage underground utilities (gas pipeline, water supply, etc.), then problems from thick long branches can be more significant.

Branches can touch power lines and cause a fire from a short circuit. They will have to be pruned constantly, but then the appearance of the tree will no longer be so attractive. In addition, the life span of a birch tree is no more than half a century, so sooner or later it can fall with a strong gust of wind or under a mass of snowfall and damage nearby buildings and roofs of houses.

Aggressor for many plants

When planting a birch on a site, you need to be prepared for the fact that not a single plant will ever grow under it. The thing is that the tree has a superficial and very powerful root system, which spreads up to 10 m along the perimeter of the crown and sucks out all the nutrients and moisture from the soil. In addition, the lush branches provide shade, so any plants won't be exposed to UV rays.

Garbage source

Despite the fact that birch leaves and buds are often used in folk medicine, this tree is not a very welcome guest on a personal plot due to the fact that a lot of debris always forms around it. In autumn, during the fall, there are many small withered leaves around the tree, which are very difficult to remove.

Also, earrings are formed on the birch, in which the seeds ripen by August, carried by the wind throughout all the surroundings. Some types of birches are weeping, they do not just shed their foliage, but also small branches with it. All this can be not only the cause of site pollution, but also conflicts with neighbors.

Requires a lot of moisture

The white-trunked beauty is an unwanted guest on dry soils. Its branched roots consume up to 60 liters of water per day, so the tree sucks out all moisture along with nutrients within a radius of several meters. In a dry area, the tree will have to provide additional watering in order for it to be wind-resistant and not die, which can be problematic.

May cause seasonal allergies

Birch earrings, or as they are also called among the people - brunki, are hated by all allergy sufferers. In the cold season, they are covered with a resinous substance that protects the contents from the ingress of liquid, and in this state they hibernate. As soon as the ambient temperature rises to +5 degrees, the catkins lengthen, become loose, and the anthers release yellow pollen. It is carried by the wind over long distances and can become a significant cause of a serious seasonal ailment - hay fever, accompanied by sneezing, coughing, watery eyes and a runny nose, especially if the tree grows nearby.

Therefore, people suffering from allergic rhinoconjunctivitis should categorically not plant a white-stemmed beauty near their home.

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The gardener should know that birch trees are “harmful” plants. Other species cannot grow next to them due to the toxicity of the soil. In order not to be mistaken with the distance when planting birches, it is advisable to use a tape measure or meter. The recommended distance between plants is at least three to four meters.

Birches love moisture and coolness, as this tree has a superficial root system. Even short-term droughts and overheating of the soil surface can be devastating. Birches do not like areas well-lit by the sun. For planting, you should choose a shaded and humid place, but so that in the future the crown of the tree has a sufficient amount of sunlight. Thus, you can safely plant a tree from the eastern or northern part of the building.

A very common and gross mistake that many gardeners make is planting a young birch tree under electric wires. This is absolutely impossible to do, since an adult plant reaches 15-20 meters in height.

The grower must provide the birch with access to water. On average in summer, when the weather is hot, an adult birch tree can draw about 200 liters from the soil in one day. That is why it is highly discouraged to plant a birch on rather hot and dry summer days, since the tree will not tolerate this and will simply dry out. One of the best times to plant a birch is when the soil retains moisture well enough and the air temperature does not exceed ten degrees Celsius. Usually this moment comes somewhere in the second half of autumn or early spring.

It is advisable that you buy a seedling in a container, since it can be in it for a long time, and you can still carefully select a place for planting and prepare a planting pit. But, if a seedling with an open root system, it must be planted quickly, naturally, the results of such a high-speed ill-conceived planting are not comforting. With the algorithm, when you dug up the earth, stuck in the roots, covered it with new earth, filled it with water and that's it, the result will be disastrous. The earth will begin to slowly settle and drag the entire seedling along with it. The root collar will deepen, and the seedling may begin to curve on its side. In this situation, the plant will grow crookedly, without adding aesthetics to the gardening.

Rules for planting birches in a garden or yard

The main rule for planting any plant is to prepare a sufficient amount of loose soil. When planting a seedling in dense soil, the roots do not germinate well. They will try to germinate through the loose mixture. Roots spiraling will begin, they will twine around themselves, interfere with each other. The plant will begin to choke. It will hurt, grow poorly. To avoid this, you must dig a large hole, fill it with loose, fertile substrate. The first year, the root system will actively develop in width and depth, only then, when the roots get stronger, they calmly pass and germinate even in solid and clay soil.

Follow these guidelines to successfully plant your plant:

  1. Careful planning of the types and number of plants used, as well as their location on the land, is important for its beauty and comfort. You will be able to think over the placement plan of the plants, as well as expect a higher survival rate of the seedlings.
  2. The planting hole must be dug in advance. The most optimal for six months, but it is possible a month before planting. During this period, the land in the landing pit will completely settle and this will ensure that the stalk planted in this pit does not leave with this land to a great depth.
  3. Apply fertilizers to the planting hole in advance, they will be evenly distributed there, and go into the state that is most acceptable for your seedling. A peculiar, microbiological environment will be formed there, which will have a beneficial effect on the root system. And most importantly, you will not burn the young roots of your seedling.
  4. The size of the pit depends on the size of the plant's root system. The volume is calculated so that the depth is 2 times and the diameter is 3 times the root system.
  5. If in your garden plot the groundwater is high enough, it is imperative to lay drainage (large rubble, broken brick) at the bottom of your dug planting pit, through which excess water will drain. It will not accumulate in this planting hole, the roots of your seedling will not rot, the drainage layer should be at least 10 cm thick.
  6. Fill your planting hole with a mixture of the top layer of the earth with some kind of filler (peat, compost, rotted manure). If you have clay soil, you can add sand to make the mixture loose, if the soil is sandy, then add clay. The main goal is to ensure the fertility and looseness of the soil, as well as air and moisture permeability. You can mix right in the pit.
  7. Having prepared the correct soil, you must fill the hole with a slide, taking into account the fact that, after standing for a while, it will settle and will be level with your ground. Then you need to withstand at least a month so that all the necessary processes take place there. After a month, dig a hole corresponding to the size of the root system and plant your tree there.
  8. The root collar should be placed at ground level. Then you can fill up the seedling, naturally press the soil a little, thereby compacting it, and forming a hole for watering.
  9. You need to water the seedling in small portions, but you need to pour in two buckets when planting! The purpose of this watering is not to nourish the tree with water, but so that the liquid, seeping through the roots, drags lumps of earth along with it and they envelop the root system in a dense manner. The absence of voids and air bubbles will help the tree to take root perfectly.
  10. Of course, it is very good to mulch the trunk circle after such a planting. It can be fallen leaves and rotted sawdust, peat, compost.

Basic rules for transplanting birch

Often, those who want to plant a birch on their site themselves create problems, both during planting and when growing it in unsuitable conditions. In order for this process to take place without problems, you just need to adhere to the following simple rules:

  • Choosing the right type of birch
  • Choosing a suitable place for a transplant
  • We comply with all the requirements of agricultural technology
  • We carry out the fight against diseases and pests in a timely manner.

With proper care, the life span of a green white-skinned birch can reach 55 years.

Common varieties of Birch

There are more than one hundred varieties of wood. Among the varieties most suitable for landscape design are:

    Hanging birch Yungi (Betula pendula "Youngii") - a dwarf species, the height of the trunk reaches 6 meters. It has a lush weeping crown shape. The foliage is diamond-shaped, jagged along the edge, painted in a pale green color. In the autumn, it acquires a pale yellow, golden color.

During the flowering period, the tree is decorated with beautiful long earrings, which are honey-bearing. It grows slowly, with an annual growth rate of about 30 cm. Downy or white birch (Betula pubescens) - you can conditionally call it a classic birch, to which a large number of songs, poems in folk art are dedicated. The trunk of the tree is slender, with age it acquires a white shade with black cracks.

The crown is wide, spreading. The trunk reaches 30 m in height. The foliage is pale green, diamond-shaped, with pronounced denticles along the edge. The sap of the tree has been used since ancient times as a delicious, healthy drink. Squat birch (Betula humilis) - a representative of a shrub species. The bush reaches a height of one and a half meters, has widely spreading branches.

The foliage is round, jagged. The bark is dark brown.

Birch in Slavic mythology

Almost all ancient Slavic peoples associate this tree with femininity, purity and chastity... During matchmaking, birch branches carried the symbol of the bride, and oak branches - the groom. And when the first-born was born in a young family, a birch tree should be planted next to the house, which will save all household members from troubles, bring health, happiness and prosperity to descendants. There was a custom to bring a sick girl to a birch tree for healing.

In the Polesie villages, on the contrary, they avoided birches near dwellings, because such a neighborhood could lead to diseases of the female half of the house, and the growths on the tree trunk spoke of induced damage. There was also a tradition to cover the body of a deceased woman with birch branches.

The ancient Slavs inextricably linked this tree with the souls of the dead.... For them, birch was a kind of bridge connecting the real and otherworldly worlds. On Green Christmastide, a week before Trinity, it was believed that the spirits of the deceased came for some time to the real world and settled in the young foliage of birches. This is the origin of the tradition of decorating the doors to the hut on the Green Christmastide with the greenery of this tree. This was done so that the souls of deceased parents would visit their descendants.

There was another custom - to plant young birch trees near the house and install buckets of water nearby so that the ancestors had where to visit and what to wash. To prevent the spirits of the dead from getting lost, birch branches were laid out on both sides of the porch. Visiting the dead and in cemeteries was a must these days. Memorial breakfasts were brought there, among other foods there were eggs painted with birch greenery. They swept the graves with birch brooms, then they opened the eyes of the dead, sticking birch branches into the grave, and when leaving, removing the branches, they closed their eyes. Our ancestors believed that this helps them communicate with the dead.

Poles believed that the souls of tragically dead young girls lived in lonely birch trees. A casual traveler, passing by such birches at night, could get into trouble. Indeed, in the moonlight, the souls of the girls left their refuge and could invite him to dance. After such dances, the unfortunate man was found dead in the morning.

The Belarusians believed that the souls of innocent people were buried under the twisted birches.

In some beliefs, witches can take not sap from the trunk from a birch tree, but milk from the branches, and fly on birch sticks, not counting brooms. The gifts of the unclean have always turned into crooked birches (horses), then into bark (bread). And if the unclean possessed a woman, then the first thing during an attack she was thrown at a birch.

You will be interested in this video telling about trees and folk signs:

Birch is present in ancient Slavic epics and legends... Our peoples repeat from one fairy tale to another the story of how a mermaid, having come out on land, became a birch tree.

For example, in a forest lake there lived a beautiful little mermaid, who, in the light of the moon, loved to walk along its banks. She was allowed to take walks only until the first rays of the sun. But once, carried away, the little mermaid broke this rule and did not notice how the radiant god Khors - the sun - appeared in the sky. Khors had never seen such girls on Earth and immediately fell in love with her. The infrequent tried to hide in her native lake, but nothing came of it, Khors did not want to let her go and turned her into a thin birch tree with branches drooping like the wonderful hair of a mermaid.

But in our fairy tales, not only little mermaids become birches, earthly girls offended by people also cannot escape this fate. The Belarusians even sing songs about this, telling how a beautiful birch tree grew at the place of the death of a young daughter-in-law from the hand of an evil mother-in-law.

Biblical legends most often tell about the healing virtues of this tree.... In the villages of eastern Polesie, you can still hear the belief that birches are the daughters of Adam. Their braids have grown into the ground, and the tears of the unfortunate girls flow birch sap every year.

In the Polish interpretation, the tree that sheltered Christ and Mary from rain and wind was sacred birch... And in the Russian interpretation, under the birch, she found protection from the unclean St. Paraskeva-Friday. There is a belief that when Judas was about to hang himself on a birch, the tree turned white with horror.

But the Serbs, on the contrary, curse this tree, believing that they whipped Christ with birch branches when he went to Golgotha.

Be that as it may, this magnificent tree, bringing joy to our souls, giving us health, has always been and will be symbol of our country.

Using hazel

Hazelnuts are very popular in confectionery. Hazel is used to obtain cream, butter, flour and a coffee substitute. Due to the content of almond oil, hazel nuts have begun to be used for making soap. They also use hazel for the preparation of cosmetics and perfumes.

Hazelnut kernels are consumed not only fresh, but also processed. It is interesting that even from the cake, which remains after the extraction of nut oil, it is used as an ingredient for making halva. Used the wood of hazel before for the manufacture of garden and vegetable gardening tools, weaved fences from hazel shoots.

The artist also did not miss the opportunity to use a versatile plant and made pencils from charcoal, which was formed from burnt wood. In many countries, the plant is used to prepare medicines that help with skin diseases, liver and kidney problems.

Hazelnuts are rich in fats, proteins and carbohydrates. This is a high-calorie product that often saved people lost in the forest from hunger. Scientists have proven that nuts are more nutritious than soy with meat. Moreover, they contain fiber, which detoxifies the body. Also, the fruits of hazel contain vitamins that are recommended for anemia, anemia, rheumatism. Nuts are useful for strengthening hair and immunity.

During pregnancy and breastfeeding, nuts are saved, because they increase milk supply and protect against cancer. For medicinal purposes, hazel bark, roots and nuts are used. In ancient times, a tincture of hazel roots was made to treat malaria. Hazel bark is used as an antiseptic and to relieve fever.

Watch the video: If You Ever See This Tree, Run Fast And Yell For Help!

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