River Birch (Water Birch)
Bon View Estates Linear Park, N. 3rd & Monroe Streets, Denver PA (parking lot is just west of Monroe near its in- tersection with North 3rd)
Bon View Estates Linear Park probably has the largest concentration of River Birch in Lancaster County. Native to the Eastern United States, Betula ni- gra typically lives in floodplains and can tolerate submersion of its lower parts for days or even weeks at a time.
While its exfoliating bark doesn't quite have the stunning color of the Paper- bark Maple (Acer griseum; see separ- ate entry), B. nigra's bark is neverthe- less spectacular, especially in younger trees.
At Bon View Linear Park, a dozen of these trees line an entrance road in what is an impressive one-sided allee display. Additional River Birches are scattered throughout the park, which lies in the floodplain of the Little Cocalico Creek.
This amazing species is a heat-tolerant member of what is otherwise a cold-weather family of trees. Unlike other birches, River Birch can be found as far south as Florida.