The Medicinal Herb Info site was created to help educate visitors about the often forgotten wisdom of the old ways of treating illnesses. Many of today's drugs and medicines were originally derived from natural ingredients, combinations of plants and other items found in nature.

We are not suggesting that you ignore the help of trained medical professionals, simply that you have additional options available for treating illnesses. Often the most effective treatment involves a responsible blend of both modern and traditional treatments.

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Smooth Alder

Scientific Names

Smooth Alder

  • Alnus serratlata
  • Hazelnut family

Common Names

  • Hazel alder

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Parts Usually Used

Stem bark
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Description of Plant(s) and Culture

Smooth alder (A. serrulata), the hazel alder, is a shrub or tree growing to 15 feet; with blackish bark that is lightly speckled with small, grayish to orange lenticels. Its leaves are elliptic to obovate (wedged-shaped), finely serrate and usually fine-haired underneath, broadest above the middle. Male catkins abruptly bent. Flowers (catkins) February to May. Cones are woody, erect, persistent.
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Where Found

It can be found from Nova Scotia to Oklahoma, Florida, and Louisiana.

Forms thickets along waterways.
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Medicinal Properties

Astringent, tonic, emetic, diuretic, purgative
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Uses

Native Americans used the bark tea for diarrhea, pain of childbirth, coughs, toothaches, sore mouth, and as a blood purifier, a laxative. Externally, as an eye wash, a wash for hives, poison-ivy rash, piles, swellings, and sprains. Used in the 1800’s for malaria and syphilis.
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Bibliography

Buy It! The Herb Book, by John Lust, Bantam Books, 666 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY. copyright 1974.

Buy It! Eastern/Central Medicinal Plants, by Steven Foster and James A. Duke., Houghton Mifflin Company, 215 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10000

Buy It! Webster’s New World Dictionary, Third College Edition, Victoria Neufeldt, Editor in Chief, New World Dictionaries: A Division of Simon & Schuster, Inc., 15 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10023

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