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Plants of New Brunswick: Alder

by Community Forests International on January 21, 2013

Alder Alnus spp.

This may be a farmer's arch enemy - but Alder has countless ecological services. It is known as a pioneer plant, taking over old fields after grasses and smaller woody shrubs. It fixes nitrogen in the soil - the most limiting nutrient in plant growth. It shades the soil so that grasses struggle and trees can grow. It holds water, keeping land from flooding. Generations down the line we see a forest - many thanks to the Alder shrub.

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