"Tree to 25 m, the smooth, reddish-brown bark exfoliating in thin layers, eventually becoming rough, with large, thickened, loose-edged plates on large trees; crushed twigs with a strong flavor of wintergreen; lvs ovate or ovate-oblong, 5–10 cm, acute or short-acuminate, very finely and sharply serrate, rounded to subcordate at base, appressed-villous on the veins beneath; lateral veins 9–12 pairs, impressed above; fruiting catkins sessile or nearly so, short-cylindric to ellipsoid or somewhat obovoid,2–3 cm; scales glabrous, 5–7 mm, the middle lobe somewhat prolonged, the oblong lateral lobes divergent or ascending; frs broadly triangular-obovoid, 2.4–3 mm and about as wide, the body half as wide; 2n=28. Moist woods; s. Me. and s. Que. to Del., O., and Ky., and in the mts. to Ga. and Ala. (B. uber (Ashe) Fernald, a striking variant in Smyth Co., Va., with rounded lvs 2–4 cm, and 3–6 pairs of lateral veins)"