American red birch (Betula occidentalis) belongs to the Betulaceae (the Birch family). It is a small or semi-tall deciduous tree that is native to western North America. This tree grows along streams in mountainous regions, and up to a height of 3-12 m. The bark is dark red-brown to blackish, and smooth but not exfoliating. The leaves are alternate, ovate to rhombic, with a serrated margin. Male and female flowers bloom in separate catkins on same plant in spring. The male catkins are pendulous, and the female catkins are erect. The fruits are nuts and appear in late summer. Each nut contains numerous tiny winged seeds.