Thursday, January 21, 2021

Red Alder

Near our house on 20 January 2021, another first sign of spring?—Red Alder male catkins emerging in front of last year’s cones. Red Alders are among the most common of Pacific Northwest hardwoods. Look for them in lowlands, usually within 100 miles of the coast. They are a pioneer species that grows in disturbed habitat from Alaska to central California. Red Alder roots fix atmospheric nitrogen via symbiosis with fungus. This winter Erika and I have seen hundreds of siskins feeding of alder fruits.

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