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Betula pendula subsp. pendula 'Purpurea'

purple-leaf birch

A medium-sized, slow-growing deciduous tree of open habit, eventually reaching over 12m in height. Bark white, becoming black and rugged at base. Leaves in spring are dark purple to dark-red, turning greenish purple in summer and finally purple-bronze in autumn

Synonyms
Betula alba 'Purpurea'
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Size
Ultimate height
Higher than 12 metres
Time to ultimate height
20–50 years
Ultimate spread
Wider than 8 metres
Growing conditions
Loam
Sand
Clay
Chalk
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Well–drained
pH
Neutral, Acid, Alkaline
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Purple Red
Summer Purple Green
Autumn Purple Bronze
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
  • Partial shade
Aspect

West–facing or South–facing or East–facing or North–facing

Exposure
Sheltered or Exposed
Hardiness
H7
Botanical details
Family
Betulaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Genus

Betula can be deciduous trees or shrubs, usually colouring well in autumn and often with striking white, pink, or peeling brown bark; separate male and female catkins open before or with the leaves in spring

Name status

Accepted

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How to grow

Cultivation

Will grow in wide range of situations. See tree cultivation for further advice

Propagation

Propagate by softwood cuttings or grafting

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Wildlife gardens
  • Low Maintenance
  • Flower borders and beds
Pruning

Pruning group 1

Pests

May be susceptible to sawflies, birch leaf mining sawfly and aphids

Diseases

May be susceptible to tree rusts, honey fungus and Powdery mildews

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