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Search for native plants by scientific name, common name or family. If you are not sure what you are looking for, try the Combination Search or our Recommended Species lists.

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Alnus viridis ssp. crispa (Mountain alder)
Weyand, Phyllis

Alnus viridis ssp. crispa

Alnus viridis (Chaix) DC. ssp. crispa (Aiton) Turrill

Mountain Alder, Green Alder, Sitka Alder

Betulaceae (Birch Family)

Synonym(s): Alnus crispa, Alnus crispa var. elongata, Alnus crispa var. mollis, Alnus viridis var. crispa, Alnus ×hultenii, Duschekia viridis


USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N), GL (N), SPM (N)

A shrub usually to 9 ft., diminishing in mature height with greater altitude. Pendent, yellow-green male catkins appear before the oval, alternate leaves are fully out. Cone-like female flowers remain on the shrub all winter.

Alders fix nitrogen and thus serve as nutrient-giving pioneers in reclamation projects.


From the Image Gallery

1 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Shrub
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Venation: Pinnate
Breeding System: Flowers Unisexual , Monoecious
Fruit Type: Samara
Size Notes: Up to about 12 feet tall, often shorter.
Leaf: Green.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug


USA: MA , ME , MI , MN , NC , NH , NY , PA , TN , VT , WI , WY
Canada: AB , MB , NB , NL , NS , ON , SK
Native Distribution: Lab. to AK, s. to New England mts., n. NY, n. MI, n. MN, Man. & n.w. WY; rarely in mts. of TN & NC
Native Habitat: Bogs; shores; cold woods; balds

Growing Conditions

Water Use: High
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry , Wet
CaCO3 Tolerance: Low
Soil Description: Rocky soils
Conditions Comments: Alders fix nitrogen and thus serve as nutrient-giving pioneers in reclamation projects. Soil conditioner - fixes nitrogen.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Mt. Cuba Center - Hockessin, DE

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

From the Archive

Wildflower Newsletter 1990 VOL. 7, NO.2 - Preservation Blooms in Recreated Prairies, New Wildflower Center Prairie Welcome...

Additional resources

USDA: Find Alnus viridis ssp. crispa in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Alnus viridis ssp. crispa in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Alnus viridis ssp. crispa


Record Modified: 2022-10-13
Research By: TWC Staff

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