European Black Alder

Alnus glutinosa
(Common Alder, Black Alder, European Alder)

The European black alder requires wet soils in a humid area. It is sometimes called "Nature's water pump" as the roots have the ability to take up to 300 gallons of water which are given off through the leaves daily.

The reddish brown wood is rot resistant, and in Europe it is used for the pilings along the canals in Venice and Amsterdam. Because the leaves remain green long after other trees have shed theirs, the alder makes a good shade and ornamental tree. It grows quickly, but is short-lived. It is characterized by the gummy feel of the twigs, the cones, and the leaves.