Do Deer Like to Eat River Birch Trees?
River birch trees (Betula nigra) are native to the southeastern United States, where white-tailed deer frequently browse on the leaves and small twigs, and rabbits eat the seedlings (small trees).
Landscape Design Using River Birch Trees
Foundation planting -- the framework for the overall landscape design of the property -- lends scale to a home's curb appeal, accents the structure's architectural features, and often delineates the property's boundaries. Additional river birch trees, interspersed with tall and medium-size evergreen shrubs at the side or back of the property, create balance in the yard's layout and establish a boundary that has texture and seasonal color, especially in the autumn when the river birch leaves turn gold and yellow. Smaller varieties of river birch trees lend themselves to ornamental settings like rock gardens, water features and woodland shade gardens. The multi-stem variety of “Heritage” river birch (Betula nigra “Cully”), which grows to about 20 feet tall and 10 to 20 feet wide, is ideal for a moonlight garden, where a landscape spot light points upward to illuminate the tree's light-colored trunks and delicate branches that shimmer in the night's breezes.
Melody Lee holds a degree in landscape design, is a Florida Master Gardener, and has more than 30 years of gardening experience. She currently works as a writer and copy editor. Her previous jobs include reporter, photographer and editor for a weekly newspaper.