Grey Alder Large Trees

  • Free Delivery
Free Returns
1 Year Guarantee
General Info Wildlife Value
Shade Full Sun
Area Coastal Areas, Exposed Windy Areas, Frost Pockets, Scotland & The North
Soil Good, Well Drained, Alkaline/Chalky, Poor/Dry, Wet
Type Screening

Alnus incana (Standard)

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  Buy 3 or more bareroot trees and save

SIZES 1-2 3-910+
6/8cm Girth Standard. Bareroot Sold out for the season £89.94Sold out for the season£74.94Sold out for the season£69.96
8/10cm Girth Standard. Bareroot Out of Stock - Unavailable this year £124.98Out of Stock - Unavailable this year£104.40Out of Stock - Unavailable this year£94.44
  Prices include VAT(where applicable)



Alder, Grey - Standard needs...
  • Tree Guards for Standards and established Trees

    Tree Guard, Heavy Duty

    From £4.02

  • Treated Tree Stakes

    Stakes, Tree Planting

    From £5.76

  • Rootgrow Root Stimulant


    From £6.00

  • Tree Planting pack - mulch mat, pegs, stake and tie

    Tree Planting Pack

    From £10.19

Alnus incana: Grey Alder, Standard Size Trees

Alnus incana, the Grey alder, takes its name from its grey bark and the silvery-grey tint to its young leaves. In early spring, before the leaves appear, it produces yellow catkins with a pretty pink-red tinge and plump little green cones, which will mature and release seeds in autumn. Young trees are extremely vigorous, growing by up to a metre per year. It tends to grow lots of suckering shoots from its base, which provide cover for wildlife.

Wild trees tend to become multi-stemmed and shrub like, but in the garden they are fairly narrow and upright, reaching about 20 metres. It is a relatively short-lived tree in nature, where the main stem usually dies after about 100 years and other plants shade out the thicket of suckers it produces.

We also grow the tidier ornamental cultivar, Alnus incana 'Aurea'. Standard trees are the largest size that we deliver; you can also buy younger Grey Alder saplings.

Browse our other alder trees or our full range of garden trees.


  • Attractive yellow catkins in spring, good for early bees
  • Very vigorous, with a suckering habit
  • Grows on the worst soils, wet or dry
  • Fixes nitrogen & improves the soil with its fallen leaves
  • To 20m

Growing Grey Alder

An extremely tough and hardy tree that will grow on practically any soil (apart from acidic peat), wet or dry, as long as it has a good amount of sun. It has a reputation for disliking chalk, but the problem is not the chalk, it is a shallow topsoil over any rocky foundation: it likes a deep soil.

It can grow quite near the coast where there is salt on the breeze.

Note on Alder roots: Alder has invasive roots that can break old water pipes and damage the foundations of old buildings or walls. 15 metres away from vulnerable structures is a safe distance to plant Alder. New build, concrete foundations are not at risk.

Did You Know?

Also known as Speckled, Hoary, or Thinleaf Alder. Native to Europe and Russia, but technically not Britain, although it has been naturalised here for a long time. Alders are pioneer trees, commonly found along the banks of rivers and mountain streams. They are often planted on polluted, reclaimed sites (they love the conditions around old quarries and mines, especially coal) where the soil is very poor or at risk of erosion, because their powerful roots stabilise and fix nitrogen below ground, while their vigorous growth dumps a lot of nutritious leaves every year over it. For the same reasons, they are used in forestry to support other young, timber trees that will eventually shade out the alders as they mature.

Grey alder wood isn't commercially useful nowadays, but it is lightweight and very easy to carve. It was once important in the cabinet making industry, and for making clogs and kitchen utensils.

Standard trees are measured by their girth in centimetres 1 metre above ground level: their trunk's waist measurement. Unlike sapling trees and hedge plants, standards aren't measured by their height, which will vary quite a bit both between and within species.
So, a 6/8cm standard tree has a trunk with a circumference of 6-8cm and an 8/10 standard has a trunk 8-10cm around. This measurement makes no difference to the tree's final height.
On average, standard trees are 2-3.5 metres tall when they arrive, but we cannot tell you precisely how tall your trees will be before we deliver them.

  • Small Box

    Small boxes

    (Orders containing seedlings or rooted cuttings)


    including VAT per order


    For ORDERS
    Over £60 inc VAT

  • Small box

    (All barerooted plants under 1.2 metres in height. Please note: all trees are charged at the trees and hedging rate.)


    including VAT per order


    For ORDERS
    Over £60 inc VAT

  • Medium box

    (Any pots up to
    and incl. 7.5L)


    including VAT per order


    For ORDERS
    Over £100 inc VAT

  • Trees & Hedging

    (For all orders of trees of any size, and all bareroot plants 1.2 metres and over in height)


    including VAT per order

  • Pallets

    (For all orders of root balls,
    and large orders, a pallet
    price will be automatically
    applied at checkout)


    including VAT per order

*Delivery to mainland Britain & the Isle of Wight ONLY. Surcharges to the Isle of Wight and some areas of Scotland apply.

Bareroot planting is best done between November and April
Bareroot and potted - what's the difference?

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