Birch trees in winter.
birch definition by Webster's New World
- any of a genus (Betula) of trees and shrubs of the birch family, having smooth bark easily peeled off in thin sheets, and hard, closegrained wood: found in northern climates
- the wood of any of these trees
- a birch rod or bunch of twigs used for whipping
Origin: Middle English birche ; from Old English beorc ; from Indo-European base an unverified form bhereĝ-, to gleam, white from source bright
- designating a family (Betulaceae, order Fagales) of dicotyledonous shrubs and trees, including the hazels, alders, and hornbeams
- of birchalso birchen
birch definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- a. Any of various deciduous trees or shrubs of the genus Betula, native to the Northern Hemisphere and having unisexual flowers in catkins, alternate, simple, toothed leaves, and bark that often peels in thin papery layers.b. The hard, close-grained wood of any of these trees, used especially in furniture, interior finishes, and plywood.
- A rod from a birch, used to administer a whipping.
Origin: Middle English, from Old English birce; see bherəg- in Indo-European roots.