Balsam Poplar (Populus balsamifera)

[ Trees > Hardwoods > Poplars . . . ]

Forest Types: Boreal, Montane; often a pioneer for spruces


Distinctively fragrant tree in northern and montane forests; leaves finely toothed, dark green above and much paler below; bark soon deeply furrowed.

by Michael Kuo

Note: This tree's distinctive, sweetly fragrant odor makes it identifiable with eyes closed.

Habitat: Along streams in the Rocky Mountains; in bogs and recolonization areas in northern forests.

Stature: Up to 80 feet high; to 3 feet in diameter; with a narrow crown.

Leaves: Up to 6 inches long; broadly egg-shaped, with a pointed tip; finely toothed; dark green above; pale green to whitish below.

Bark: Smooth and brown at first; soon becoming furrowed, and by maturity dark gray and deeply furrowed.

Flowers: On catkins in spring; fruits tiny, attached to cottony hairs.

(References consulted)

Frequent Mushroom Associates:

Hemipholiota populnea, Morchella esculentoides, and others.


Populus balsamifera

Populus balsamifera

Populus balsamifera

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Cite this page as:

Kuo, M. (2007, April). Balsam poplar (Populus balsamifera). Retrieved from the MushroomExpert.Com Web site: