Alnus glutinosa, commonly known as the common alder, is a deciduous tree native to most of Europe, northern Africa, and western Asia. It is commonly found in wetlands, along rivers, and in other moist habitats.
The common alder can grow up to 30 meters tall and has a narrow, conical shape when young, which becomes more rounded with age. The bark is smooth and greyish-brown, and the leaves are dark green and oval-shaped, with a slightly serrated edge. The tree produces small, inconspicuous flowers in the spring, which are followed by woody, cone-shaped fruit that remain on the tree throughout the winter.
Common alder wood is light brown with a slightly pinkish tint, and it is moderately hard, strong, and durable. It is commonly used in the manufacture of furniture, flooring, and veneer, and it is also used for fuel and charcoal production.
In addition to its economic uses, common alder is also valued for its ecological roles. It is a pioneer species that can colonize disturbed sites and improve soil fertility through nitrogen fixation. The tree provides important habitat for a variety of wildlife, including birds, mammals, and insects.
Overall, Alnus glutinosa is a versatile and valuable tree species that plays an important role in both human and natural systems.