With distinctive silver-white bark, a straight trunk, graceful dropping branches and gracing a pointed crown when young silver birches are a tree that is easy to identify.
The leaves are alternate and toothed with a flat base hanging from the branch on hairless stalks.
The male catkins are purple-brown and open in April along with the green female catkins.
Fruiting catkins are present on the tree until winter, they then break up into scales and tiny wind-borne seeds.
Birch bark is very oily and useful as a tinder in firelighting, it peels of the tree and can then be folded into a fan-shape before being lit and added to the fire to start it off.
Though the birch tree does not produce actual food it's sap has interesting qualities. It is sweet, sugary and norishing. Once extracted from the tree it can simply be drank as it is or made into a wine.