Alnus nitida (Himalayan Alder) is a deciduous tree species belonging to the Betulaceae family. It is native to the Himalayan region, including parts of India, Nepal, Bhutan, and China. The Himalayan Alder is primarily found in mountainous areas, often growing alongside rivers and streams.
The Himalayan Alder is a medium-sized tree that typically reaches a height of 30 to 50 feet (9 to 15 meters). It has an upright, conical shape when young, which gradually becomes more rounded as it matures. The leaves are dark green and glossy, with a toothed or serrated margin. The bark of the tree is smooth and grayish-brown, developing shallow furrows and ridges with age.
One of the notable characteristics of the Himalayan Alder is its ability to fix nitrogen in the soil through its association with nitrogen-fixing bacteria. This trait makes it valuable for soil improvement and ecosystem restoration, as it helps enrich the soil with nitrogen, benefiting other plants in the vicinity.
The Himalayan Alder is adapted to a variety of soil types, including clay, loam, and sandy soils, but it prefers moist, well-drained conditions. It is often found in riparian zones and areas with high water availability. The tree is tolerant of cold temperatures and can withstand frost and snow.
As an ecological species, the Himalayan Alder plays a significant role in stabilizing soil, preventing erosion, and providing habitat for various wildlife species. Its dense foliage offers shade and contributes to the overall biodiversity of the ecosystem.
While the Himalayan Alder is primarily valued for its ecological contributions, it is less commonly used for commercial purposes or in landscaping. However, it can be planted in appropriate riparian or wetland areas for conservation and restoration purposes.
Botanical Name : Alnus nitida
Common Name : Himalayan Alder
Height : 65 ft
Spread : 30 ft
Germination Info : Seed requires 30-60 days cold stratification
Hardiness zone : 6-8
Average seed per ounce : Approx. 37,500