River Birch -- Overused

One of the most overused ornamental trees is river birch (Betula nigra). Do not presume that I mean it is unattractive. The bark can be very enticing, especially the cultivar 'Cully' (aka 'Heritage') pictured above. This special lighter pigmented deviant was discovered at a St. Louis residence in the late 1970's by Jacksonville IL nurseryman Earl Cully (d 2017) and he profited substantially from marketing it. I am originally from central Illinois and did much botanizing there yet never got to meet Mr. Cully. However, my friend, mentor and bonafide master Dr. Wesley Whiteside (d 2015), to whom I dedicated my Rantings book, was a good friend of the river birch king and laudatory of his pl

Rant of the Month

Unfortunately, most people know little about gardening and environmental issues including many "professionals" employed to choose, install and maintain plants and design landscapes. This page highlights specific issues with commentary on remedy or recommendation for course of action. Examples are numerous and easy to find -- rarely requiring me to travel far from home.  Hopefully, these postings will make the task of finding examples more difficult.  I will occasionally also post outstanding and approved examples in an effort to educate.

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