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Walk The Trail: Quincy Salt Marsh TrailStop 8

Gray Birch - Betula populifolia

The Gray Birch is a small tree that frequently colonizes burned-out or disturbed areas. It is short-lived, often dying soon after it is shaded out by larger trees. Its chalky white bark resembles that of a paper birch but does not peel as easily. The trunk includes many dark inverted v's (chevrons) along various horizontal marks and at the base of its branches. Leaves are double-toothed, as is typical of all birch species, but the twigs lack the wintergreen odor characteristic of other birches.

Birch has been valued in the cabinetmaking industry, and also for the manufacturing of smaller household tools such as spools and clothespins.


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