Image for American Green Alder

American Green Alder

Scientific name

Alnus viridis


The Green Alder is a medium to large sized shrub that can grow from 2-4 m in height. This plant may also be known by the common name Mountain Alder. The leaves are ovate to elliptical shaped with pubescent undersides, a resin coating, and margins that are serrated with fine teeth. The leaves are bright shiny green on the upper surface, and yellowish-green beneath. The Green Alder does not need two trees to reproduce; the flowers are unisexual with male and female catkins arranged on the same plant. The Green Alder spreads through underground tubers and shoots, which makes it able to quickly regenerate after disturbance like fires.

Planting conditions

The Green Alder can grow well on dry upland sites as well as moist and wet sites. Additionally, it can tolerate a wide range of different sunlight exposures. This shrub is tolerant of nutrient poor soils because it has nitrogen-fixing bacteria on the roots which converts nitrogen into a form usable for plants. Leaf litter from this shrub enriches the soil with nitrogen which is beneficial for other nearby plants.


  • Plant height:
    • Any
    • Over 3m
  • Moisture level:
    • Dry
    • Normal
    • Moist
    • Wet
  • Light conditions:
    • Full sun
    • Partial sun
    • Shade
  • Soil type:
    • Sandy
    • Loamy
    • Rocky
  • pH:
    • Normal
  • Depth:
    • Potted
    • Bareroot
  • Eco Zone:
    • 1b
    • 2a
    • 2b
    • 3a
    • 3b
    • 4a
    • 4b
    • 5a
    • 5b
    • 6a
  • Plant type:
    • Shrub
  • Height:
    • 2-4 m
  • Spread:
    • 2 m