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

Definition of alder

: 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

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Examples of alder in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web That’s moderate for area tree pollen, with alder, cedar family, cottonwood, elm, maple and pine making up the early pollinators. Washington Post, 17 Feb. 2022 For soils with above-average moisture: river birch, black tupelo, American hornbeam, sweetbay magnolia, serviceberry and smooth alder should grow well. Miri Talabac, Baltimore Sun, 20 Apr. 2022 The Pacific Northwest is likely to see peak pollen season a month earlier because of the early pollen season of alder. Allison L. Steiner, The Conversation, 15 Mar. 2022 In the Southeast, pollen from grasses and weeds is predicted to significantly increase, while in the Pacific Northwest, the height of allergy season may shift forward about a month because of the pollination cycle of alder trees. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, 22 Mar. 2022 The start of alder tree pollen season will move most dramatically, an issue in the Pacific Northwest. Detroit Free Press, 16 Mar. 2022 Every so often its favorite wild foods such as birch and alder seeds are in short supply and the birds fly farther south than normal. Paul A. Smith, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 2 Feb. 2022 The creek crossing is shaded with enormous sycamores and a few cottonwood, willow and alder trees that show off in shades of yellow and russet brown from late October through December. Mare Czinar, The Arizona Republic, 3 Nov. 2021 Additional seedlings will be planted next spring, including sticks of willow and alder, their bases treated with a chemical that promotes root growth. Washington Post, 11 Sep. 2021 See More

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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Dictionary Entries Near alder

al dente



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Statistics for alder

Last Updated

5 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Alder.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for alder


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

Alder biographical name

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

Definition of Alder

Kurt 1902–1958 German chemist

More from Merriam-Webster on alder

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


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