I've been playing around with using photoshop to remove colour from some of my photos recently. Rather than leaving them in greyscale though, I've been adding back a little red and blue to try to create a certain mood. I think it really shows up the colour of these two birches from the area of our garden we call the arboretum. On the left is the canoebark birch, Betula papyrifera, so called because it is used for birchbark canoe-making amongst other uses by indigenous peoples in its native America. On the right is Betula utilis "jermyns" from the other side of the world in the Himalayas. This is a selected form and is grafted and you can see the superior purity of its white bark easily by comparison with papyrifera.
I have been thinking recently about how underused birches are as street and amenity trees. They offer a nice light shade, a relatively upright habit and quick growth. Their leaves and fruiting bodies are also small and unlikely to clog street drains or make pavements slippery compared to some other families and yet we don't see them but I hope to some day. An avenue of white legged "jermyns" would certainly brighten up a grey day in London.