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Classification, origin and diffusion
LOntano napoletano is a plant native to our country, where it is located from Sardinia (and Corsica) to the Campania and Calabria-Apennines. It forms riparian bushes.
Neapolitan alder - Alnus cordata (Loisel.) Desf. (photo www.bomengids.nl)
Neapolitan alder - Alnus cordata (Loisel.) Desf. (photo Paul Hackney)
Size and bearing
Tree up to 15 meters high, with dense foliage and bright dark green.
Trunk and bark
The trunk is straight or ascending, sometimes multiple, with rind first gray and shiny, then opaque and cracked.
The leaves are deciduous, alternate, petiolate, ovate with a sharp apex, with a toothed margin, up to 8 cm long.
Monoecious plant with unisexual inflorescences: the male flowers are arranged in triads, in catkins; the female ones formed of small compact, pedunculate pine cones, carried in racemes. The fruits are woody pinions (achenocones), ovoid or globular, up to 3 cm long, green then brownish when opened, when they release small winged achenes.
The wood is light and compact and is mainly used for packaging.