Betulaceae

(redirected from birch family)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical.
Related to birch family: beech family

Betulaceae

[‚bech·ə′lās·ē‚ē]
(botany)
A small family of dicotyledonous plants in the order Fagales characterized by stipulate leaves, seeds without endosperm, and by being monoecious with female flowers mostly in catkins.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
Enlarge picture
white birch

white birch

Trees have paper-like bark. Snapped twigs have wintergreen aroma. Bark and twig tea used for lung problems, sore muscles, joint pain, skin fungus, cracked heels, bladder and urinary issues, stomach aches, laxative, diuretic, colds, fever, rheumatism, diarrhea, tumors, cancer, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, skin cancer. Birch tea has been historically used in enemas. Worm-like flowers (catkins) also edible.
Edible Plant Guide © 2012 Markus Rothkranz
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Betulaceae

 

a family of monoecious, dicotyledonous plants.

Betulaceae are trees or shrubs with alternate leaves and early falling stipules. The flowers are small, plain, unisexual, anemophilous, and gathered into compound, catkin-like inflorescences consisting of extremely vestigial dichasia (two or three flowered). The staminal (male) catkins are pendulous, long, and cylindrical; the pistillate (female) ones are more or less upright, shorter than the staminal ones, and cylindrical or oval. The ovary is on top. The fruit is nutlike, winged, or wingless. There are two genera of Betulaceae: Betula (birch) and Alnus (alder). The number of species is very approximate (because of highly developed hybridization of the birch) but is close to 200. Betulaceae are distributed chiefly in the nontropical regions of the northern hemisphere, but they are also found in southern Asia and in America as far south as Chile and Argentina. Both the birch and the alder are important timber-forming species. Sometimes the hazels are included in the Betulaceae family as a special subfamily.

REFERENCES

Flora SSSR, vol. 5. Moscow-Leningrad, 1936.
Winkler, H. “Betulaceae.” In Das Pflanzenreich, fasc. 19. Leipzig, 1904.

M. E. KIRPICHNIKOV

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
In addition to birch family, fertilization-shade treatments, and defoliation in the previous year, there was a further treatment in our design, the rapid inducible resistance (RIR), which had been demonstrated earlier in the mountain birch (e.g., Haukioja and Hanhimaki 1985).
The birch variables were analyzed by ANOVA (GLM procedure of SAS with Type III sums of squares; SAS Institute 1990), including birch family as a random effect and fertilization - shade treatment and previous-year defoliation (to trigger DIR) as fixed effects.
Birch family accounted for significant variation on long-shoot growth and proportion of long shoots in the upper part of the crown (Table 1).
For all variables of leaf chemistry except P, birch family had a significant effect (Table 2).
For the past three summers Glaser has volunteered at the Birch Family Camp (Putnam Valley, NY) as a counselor for three- to six-year-olds.