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Betula 'Royal Frost' is often confused with:
Betula populifolia 'Whitespire' Betula platyphylla var. japonica 'Whitespire'
Plants that fill a similar niche:
Ulmus americana Full Form
Ulmus alata Ulmus alata
Acer palmatum 'Osakazuki' Summer form
Betula 'Royal Frost' has some common insect problems:
Bronze Birch Borer

Betula 'Royal Frost'

Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
BET-yoo-luh
Description

Betula 'Royal Frost', or Birch, is an upright, pyramidal tree typically grown as an ornamental and known for its white bark and colorful red-purple leaves and yellow-orange fall foliage. Betula is Latin for birch and describes a genus of about 60 species of deciduous trees and shrubs found in many gardens and landscapes throughout the northern hemisphere. 'Royal Frost' is a hybrid cross between Betula populifolia 'Whitespire' (which gives it white bark) and Betula 'Crimson Frost' (responsible for the unusual purple leaves).

'Royal Frost' is best grown in moist, acidic, sandy or rocky, well-drained loams in full sun to part shade. Best foliage color occurs in full sun, but if the plant is sited in an area of summer heat and humidity, it will appreciate afternoon partial shade. 'Royal Frost' does best in cool northern climates where summer temperatures rarely exceed 75 degrees F. and where root zones are generally covered with snow throughout the winter. Keep the tree consistently moist and consider using soaker hoses and bark mulches to keep the root zones cool and moist. It needs little pruning, but if necessary, you can prune during the dormant season. Do not prune in winter or spring when the sap is running because it will bleed.

Birches are considered a "pioneer" species and, thus, tends to grow quickly when young. ‘Royal Frost’ typically matures over time to 30-40' tall and to 15-20' wide. Tiny monoecious (male and female) flowers appear in early spring in separate catkins on the same tree. Greenish female flowers are followed by drooping cone-like fruits containing numerous small winged seeds that typically mature in late summer.

Diseases, Insects, and Other Plant Problems:

This cultivar can become stressed by summer heat and humidity. It is not recommended for planting south of USDA Zone 7. If stressed, birches can become vulnerable to the bronze birch borer which infects and kills trees. Aphids, leaf miner and birch skeletonizer may also occur. Watch for leaf spot problems.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#interesting bark#pyramidal#white bark#green flowers#winter interest#fall interest#upright#deer resistant#early spring flowers#fall color yellow#fall color orange
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#interesting bark#pyramidal#white bark#green flowers#winter interest#fall interest#upright#deer resistant#early spring flowers#fall color yellow#fall color orange
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Betula
    Family:
    Betulaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Eastern Canada and Northeastern United States
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    tolerates deer
    Dimensions:
    Height: 30 ft. 0 in. - 40 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 15 ft. 0 in. - 20 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Erect
    Pyramidal
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Maintenance:
    High
    Texture:
    Coarse
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Shallow Rocky
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    3b, 3a, 4b, 4a, 5b, 5a, 6b, 6a
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Samara
    Fruit Description:
    Female flowers produce cone-like fruits with winged seeds. The fruit is a small samara, although the wings may be obscure in some species.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Green
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Catkin
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Petals:
    Bracts
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Tiny green flowers appear in early spring. Both male and female flowers appear on the same tree.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Orange
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Margin:
    Doubly Serrate
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    Leaves often appear in pairs, but these pairs are really borne on spur-like, two-leaved, lateral branchlets.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    White
    Surface/Attachment:
    Papery
    Bark Description:
    The bark is characteristically marked with long, horizontal lenticels, and often separates into thin, papery plates. Attractive white bark makes for great winter interest in the landscape.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Naturalized Area
    Landscape Theme:
    Rain Garden
    Winter Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Specimen
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer