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Alnus glutinosa - Common Alder

Alnus glutinosa, a native to Britain, which has a natural habitat in moist ground near rivers, ponds and lakes and thrives in damp, cool areas such as marches, wet woodland and streams where its roots help to prevent soil erosion. It can also grow in drier condition and sometimes occurs in mixed woodland and on forest edges.

Conical in shape mature trees can reach around 20m and live to around 60 years. The bark is dark and fissured, its leaves are 3-9cm long, dark green, racquet-shaped and leathery with serrated edges.

Catkins appear on the tree between February and April, and being monoecism the male catkins are yellow and pendulous with the female are green and oval shaped.

FACT: The wood of the Alder was widely used to make clogs especially for industrial use due to its water, grease, and impact resistant properties as well as being long lasting.

Plant Profile

Name: Alnus glutinosa

Common Name: Common Alder

Family: Beulaceae

Height: Up to 20 metres

Width: 4 to 8 metres

Demands: Sun to light shade

Soil: Prefers Laom. Chalk and Clay with damp to moderately dry conditions

Foliage: Deciduous, green leaves

Flowers: Yellow Catkins

Alnus glutinosa info sheet