Description: White bark tree, up to 30 m tall. Triangular or rhomboid leaves up to 2-7 cm tall,with long and sharp doubly-serrated tip. Young leaves are sticky, whereas old ones are glabrous. Fruits are small with two scarious wings.
Distribution in Kosovo: In the forests of the mountainous areas of Sharr Mountains and the Albanian Alps, or cultivated in parks for decorative purposes.
Parts used: Leaves (Betulae folium), birch bark (Betulae cortex), fluid extracted from the bark(Betulae pix).
Harvest time: Leaves are harvested in spring and early summer (IV-VI), whereas buds are harvested during the winter (XII-II).
Drying: Dried in ovens, in temperature up to 500 C. Ratio: 4:1 (leaves), buds 3:1.
Therapeutic category: Diuretic (leaves), antiseptic (bark fluid).
Use: Leaves are used to treat urinary tract infections and as a diuretic in cases of rheumatic diseases. Fluid (oil) is used against eczema, psoriasis, etc.
Preparation and dosage: Infusions, tincture and extract are prepared from 2-3 g of dried leaves. It can be taken (as tea) 3 times per day.