Betula, or birch trees, are mostly native to North America and come in many varieties, from the gray birch to the river birch. They are hardy in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 4 through 9, depending on the variety, and grow to heights of 30 to 50 feet with a spread of 20 to 35 feet. Birch trees bleed heavily when they are pruned; they should be pruned only in the late fall, according to master gardener Phyllis Heuerman.
Remove any dead, damaged or diseased branches at the trunk of the betula tree with a pruning saw. Wipe down the saw between each cut with bleach to avoid spreading disease throughout the tree.
Remove any vertical or weak branches at the trunk of the betula tree with the pruning saw. Make the pruning cut about 1/2 inch from the trunk of the tree.
Remove any sagging branches around the base of the betula tree that might impair an adult's movement around the trunk of the tree. Cut off the branches with the pruning saw, making the cut 1/2 inch from the trunk of the tree.