Herb: Japanese Alder

Latin name: Alnus japonica

Family: Betulaceae (Birch Family)

Medicinal use of Japanese Alder:

Various species of alder, including this species, seem to contain antitumour compounds.

Description of the plant:


22 m
(72 feet)

to March

Habitat of the herb:

Wet lowlands all over Japan.

Other uses of Japanese Alder:

A dye is obtained from the bark. No more details are given. Wood - close grained. Used for turnery, charcoal.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe and only just covered. Spring sown seed should also germinate successfully so long as it is not covered. The seed should germinate in the spring as the weather warms up. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots. If growth is sufficient, it is possible to plant them out into their permanent positions in the summer, otherwise keep them in pots outdoors and plant them out in the spring. If you have sufficient quantity of seed, it can be sown thinly in an outdoor seed bed in the spring. The seedlings can either be planted out into their permanent positions in the autumn/winter, or they can be allowed to grow on in the seed bed for a further season before planting them. Cuttings of mature wood, taken as soon as the leaves fall in autumn, outdoors in sandy soil.

Cultivation of Japanese Alder:

Wet lowlands all over Japan.

Known hazards of Alnus japonica:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.