Asked on Jun 12, 2013

Mystery shrub/tree in my garden

LgsmithLinda HincheyNichter's Home Services Corp


I have another mystery shrub/tree that's popped up in my flower garden this past few years. I've left it alone until I find out what it is... I may want to transplant it. It is about 3 ft. high. The leaves in this pic are wet which gives them the illusion that they are shinny but they are, in fact, a bit fuzzy. The bark is very bright red and it does not have the distinctive wintergreen aroma that Sweet Birch has. We live in the middle of the mountains in Southwestern Virginia.
8 answers
  • Gabriele
    on Jun 12, 2013

    Looks like "MINT" ?? does it have a fragrance ?

  • 360 Sod (Donna Dixson)
    on Jun 12, 2013

    Could be a birch tree sapling or another type weed tree sapling.

  • Linda Hinchey
    on Jun 12, 2013

    No, it has no fragrance and it's very woody like a shrub, abt. 3 ft. tall.

  • Linda Hinchey
    on Jun 12, 2013

    Yes, I agree. It does look like a type of birch. We do have lots of birch in the mountains surrounding our home, including Sweet Birch and Yellow Birch, but I've never seen one quite like this. I can rule out both of these. Sweet Birch has more of a dark red smooth bark and this is very bright. Also, Sweet Birch has a distinctive wintergreen aroma. The Yellow Birch has a yellow bark which rules it out.

  • Linda Hinchey
    on Jul 31, 2013

    Thanks for the answers, but I'm still hoping for more ideas.

  • I was going to suggest Japanese knotweed ( darned invasive!) but I don't think their leaves are serrated on the edges

  • Linda Hinchey
    on Aug 1, 2013

    We do have Japanese Knotweed but the leaves are much smaller on this plant and it's more woody.

  • Lgsmith
    on Aug 3, 2013

    I agree with Rhonda... looks like elm to me. Elm and birch have nearly the same shaped leaf.

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