Jepson eFlora: Taxon page
Vascular Plants of California
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Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata

Higher Taxonomy
Family: BetulaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Habit: Shrub, tree; monoecious. Stem: trunk < 35 m; bark smooth to scaly, peeling in thin layers or not, lenticels present or not. Leaf: simple, alternate, petioled, deciduous; stipules deciduous; blade ovate to elliptic, generally serrate, generally +- doubly so. Inflorescence: catkin, generally appearing before leaves, often clustered; bracts each subtending 2--3 flowers, 3--6 bractlets. Staminate Inflorescence: pendent, +- elongate. Pistillate Inflorescence: pendent or erect, developing variously in fruit (see key to genera). Staminate Flower: sepals 0--4, minute; petals 0; stamens 1--10; pistil vestigial or 0. Pistillate Flower: sepals 0--4; petals 0; stamens 0; pistil 1, ovary inferior or superior, chambers 2, each 1-ovuled by abortion, stigmas 2. Fruit: achene, nut, winged or not, subtended or enclosed by 1--2 bracts.
Genera In Family: 6 genera, 155 species: generally northern hemisphere; some cultivated.
eFlora Treatment Author: John O. Sawyer, Jr.
Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.
Genus: AlnusView DescriptionDichotomous Key

Common Name: ALDER
Stem: trunk < 35 m; bark smooth, gray to brown; twigs glabrous to fine-hairy, red-gray; lenticels small; winter buds stalked, 0--6-scaled. Leaf: glabrous to fine-hairy; blade 3--15 cm, cordate to elliptic or diamond-shaped. Staminate Inflorescence: 5--20 cm; bracts each subtending 3 flowers, 4 bractlets. Pistillate Inflorescence: 5--20 mm; bracts each subtending 2 flowers, 4 fused bractlets. Staminate Flower: sepals 4; stamens 1--4. Pistillate Flower: sepals 0. Fruit: many, in cone-like catkin, not enclosed by bract, winged, bracts 3 mm, woody, persistent.
Species In Genus: +- 25 species: northern hemisphere, South America. Etymology: (Latin: alder) Note: Root nodules contain nitrogen-fixing bacteria; wood used for interior finishing, to smoke fish, meats.
Species: Alnus viridisView Description 

Common Name: GREEN ALDER
Habit: Shrub. Stem: trunks < 8 m. Leaf: blade narrow- to broad-ovate, base tapered to cordate, tip acute or short-acuminate to tapered, margin +- flat, adaxially yellow-green to dark green, hairs sparse, especially on veins, moderately to heavily resinous. Inflorescence: appearing with or before leaves.
Note: 2 other subspecies in Canada, Europe.
Alnus viridis (Chaix) Lam. & DC. subsp. sinuata (Regel) Á. Löve & D. Löve
Stem: trunks < 8 m. Leaf: blade thin, narrow- to broad-ovate, base tapered to subcordate, tip acute to tapered, coarsely doubly serrate, adaxially yellow-green, shiny, abaxially green, glabrous or hairs restricted to or denser in major vein axils, lightly to moderately resinous.
Ecology: Along creeks, seeps, meadow margins; Elevation: 1000--2700 m. Bioregional Distribution: KR, NCoRO, NCoRH, w CaRH (Grizzly Peak, Shasta Co.); Distribution Outside California: to Alaska, western Canada. Flowering Time: Spring
Synonyms: Alnus sinuata (Regel) Rydb.
Jepson eFlora Author: John O. Sawyer, Jr.
Index of California Plant Names (ICPN; linked via the Jepson Online Interchange)

Previous taxon: Alnus viridis subsp. fruticosa
Next taxon: Betula

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Citation for this treatment: John O. Sawyer, Jr. 2012, Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, /eflora/eflora_display.php?tid=49088, accessed on September 18, 2021.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2021, Jepson eFlora,, accessed on September 18, 2021.

Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata
click for enlargement
© 2010 Keir Morse
Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata
click for enlargement
© 2010 Keir Morse
Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata
click for enlargement
© 2007 California Academy of Sciences
Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata
click for enlargement
© 2010 Keir Morse
Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata
click for enlargement
© 2010 Keir Morse
Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata
click for enlargement
© 2010 Keir Morse

More photos of Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata in CalPhotos

Geographic subdivisions for Alnus viridis subsp. sinuata:
KR, NCoRO, NCoRH, w CaRH (Grizzly Peak, Shasta Co.)
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map of distribution 1
(Note: any qualifiers in the taxon distribution description, such as 'northern', 'southern', 'adjacent' etc., are not reflected in the map above, and in some cases indication of a taxon in a subdivision is based on a single collection or author-verified occurence).


View elevation by latitude chart

Data provided by the participants of the  Consortium of California Herbaria.
View all CCH records
All markers link to CCH specimen records. The original determination is shown in the popup window.
Blue markers indicate specimens that map to one of the expected Jepson geographic subdivisions (see left map). Purple markers indicate specimens collected from a garden, greenhouse, or other non-wild location.
Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues.

CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa, if there are more than 1 infraspecific taxon in CA.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time (fruiting time in some monocot genera).