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River Birch VS Black Birch

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by sledhead41, Jun 22, 2009.

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  1. sledhead41

    sledhead41 New Member

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    I just scored 2 truck loads of Birch off craigs list. The fella said it was River Birch. The leaves say its Blach Birch. Trying to get pics.

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  2. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    sure looks like river birch
  3. Todd

    Todd Minister of Fire

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    I have heard Black Birch has a winter green/spearmint smell and taste under the bark or if you chew on a twig?
  4. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa Minister of Fire

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  5. sledhead41

    sledhead41 New Member

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    So,,,, you want me to chew on the bark. Ok I'll bite, no, wate maybe not. They all burn and Birch is a good day time burn.
  6. PA. Woodsman

    PA. Woodsman Minister of Fire

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    It doesn't look like the Black Birch we have around here so I'd bet on River Birch.
  7. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa Minister of Fire

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    Burns good at night to. Black Birch has more BTU per cord than Oak.
  8. DBoon

    DBoon Minister of Fire

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    River Birch has light pink heartwood - a lighter shade than cherry. These logs don't seem to have that, so unless that color is washed out in the flashbulb, it isn't River Birch.
  9. Wood Duck

    Wood Duck Minister of Fire

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    I am not sure I can tell from the bark in those pictures. Black Birch here can be pretty variable in how shaggy the bark is, and I have seen some that look like the wood in the pictures. Black Birch does have a distinct wintergeen smell. You will smell it while splitting, or chew on a small twig and you'll taste it. (you could merely scratch and sniff a small twig, but it would be more dramatic to chew it). Black Birch is a very high BTU wood. I'd guess River Birch is a lot closer to White or Paper Birch in BTU than to Black Birch.
  10. PA. Woodsman

    PA. Woodsman Minister of Fire

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    Anyone call Black Birch "Cherry" Birch out your part of the state, Wood Duck? We do here...
  11. sledhead41

    sledhead41 New Member

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    OK I did it, It don't taste minty, it tastes like Grass, Grassy. Smells like grass when twig is split
  12. sledhead41

    sledhead41 New Member

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    Finaly got around to spliting today. By far the stringingest wood I have ever split,. Had to fight it to the last 1/2 inch almost every piece. No minty smell, but will smell good in the woodstove!
  13. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    Post a picture of the splits. I don't think its either.
  14. Wood Duck

    Wood Duck Minister of Fire

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    I haven't heard anyone call Black birch 'Cherry Birch' here in western PA. I'll ask the local lumberjacks next time I run into them.

    If the wood doesn't smell like wintergreen, it isn't Black Birch, but it'll still be pretty good firewood.
  15. sledhead41

    sledhead41 New Member

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    Heres a pic of the splits. Some of the heart wood did have a pink color to it. The best thing is Craigslist topped it off with a truck load of Red Oak. YAA HOO done spliting for the year, have 2 years of wood split and stacked.

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  16. gzecc

    gzecc Minister of Fire

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    If its all the same tree, the paper flacking looking split is called river birch.
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