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Alder (Alnus glutinosa)

Nearly always found growing by water so Kingfisher Pools is an ideal habitat for Alder trees. This water loving tree does not rot when water-logged in fact the wood gets stronger. The tree can reach 28 metres and live for 60 years.

The fissured dark bark is often covered in lichens. The twigs easily seen in winter are light in colour with spotted stems the really young ones being sticky. The flowers are catkins and can be seen between February and April.

The Alder is monoecious meaning both male and female flowers are on the same tree. However, the male flowers are pendular catkins 2-6cm. turning yellow as they age. Female flowers are green oval cone shaped in bunches.

As the season progresses the male catkins falloff but the female ones remain on turning brown and opening up (like a cone) to release the seeds. The flowers are fertilised by wind action and the seeds are dispersed by wind and water.

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