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Speckled Alder

Scientific name

Alnus incana


The Speckled Alder is a large shrub species which can grow to 8m. This species produces alternate, egg-shaped, and double-toothed leaves with prominent veins. The stem initially begins reddish-brown and hairy, becoming dark brown and hairless with age. The bark also develops prominent orange-white speckles as it matures, hence the common name. The Speckled Alder produces male and female catkins on the same tree. Wingless nutlets drop from the female catkins during autumn. This species is ideal for rehabilitation applications because its roots contain nodules with nitrogen fixing bacteria, which converts nitrogen to a usable form and increases this nutrient in the soil. Speckled Alder requires moist soils and can usually be found in wet organic swamps, along shorelines, and in moist hardwood forests.

Planting conditions

Plant in very wet, fine soils with lots of sun.


  • Plant height:
    • Any
    • Over 3m
  • Moisture level:
    • Moist
    • Wet
    • Flood Tolerant
  • Light conditions:
    • Full sun
  • Soil type:
    • Sandy
    • Loamy
    • Clay
    • Humus
  • pH:
    • Acidic
    • Normal
  • Depth:
    • Potted
    • Bareroot
  • Eco Zone:
    • 2a
    • 2b
    • 3a
    • 3b
    • 4a
    • 4b
    • 5a
    • 5b
  • Plant type:
    • Shrub
  • Height:
    • 8m
  • Spread:
    • 3m