al·​der | \ ˈȯl-dər How to pronounce alder (audio) \

Definition of alder

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: any of a genus (Alnus) of toothed-leaved trees or shrubs of the birch family that have catkins which become woody, that typically grow in cool moist ground, and that have wood used especially in turnery also : its wood


biographical name
Al·​der | \ ˈäl-dər How to pronounce Alder (audio) \

Definition of Alder (Entry 2 of 2)

Kurt 1902–1958 German chemist

Examples of alder in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Where aspens are scarce or absent, important winter foods include the buds and catkins of apple, alder, birch, black cottonwood, cherry, ironwood, willow, and cedar. Dave Hurteau, Field & Stream, "How to Hunt Ruffed Grouse," 24 Dec. 2020 Western red cedar is the wood most often used, but maple, hickory, and alder are also common. The Editors, Outdoor Life, "How to Cook Meals with Grilling Planks," 23 Oct. 2019 The 20th release from St. George Spirits master distiller Lance Winters is made from two-row pale malt, crystal malt, chocolate malt, black patent and Bamberg malt, which is smoked over alder and beechwood. Lou Bustamante,, "Is there such a thing as a California-style whiskey? Finally, the answer is yes," 17 Dec. 2020 The boar disappeared into an alder patch and never returned. Tyler Freel, Outdoor Life, "Killing a Grizzly the Old-Fashioned Way: With a Longbow and a Stone-Point Arrowhead," 17 Nov. 2020 The kitchen, equipped with granite countertops, alder wood cabinets, dual refrigerators and freezers, an ice maker and a walk-in pantry, is open to the family room. Dallas News, "Cindy O’Gorman showcases amenity-laden estate," 7 Nov. 2020 There are a handful of options, including red alder, which is native to North America’s West Coast. Priyanka Runwal, Scientific American, "Climate Change Hits Rock and Roll as Prized Guitar Wood Shortage Looms," 28 Oct. 2020 The nest, high up in an alder tree, was sealed with foam and shrink wrap and hornets that remained inside were asphyxiated, Spichiger said. CBS News, "Scientists kill 85 "murder hornets" and capture 13 alive: "This is only the start"," 28 Oct. 2020 Some aspen are still hanging on, with cottonwood, maple, alder and willows peaking now. Rosemary Mcclure, Los Angeles Times, "It’s not too late. Last call for fall color in these California locations," 28 Oct. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'alder.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of alder


14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for alder


Middle English, from Old English alor; akin to Old High German elira alder, Latin alnus

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Time Traveler for alder

Time Traveler

The first known use of alder was in the 14th century

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Statistics for alder

Last Updated

17 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Alder.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for alder


How to pronounce Alder (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of alder

: a type of tree or shrub that grows in wet ground in some northern countries


al·​der | \ ˈȯl-dər How to pronounce alder (audio) \

Kids Definition of alder

: a tree or shrub related to the birches that has toothed leaves and grows in moist soil

More from Merriam-Webster on alder

Nglish: Translation of alder for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about alder

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