Alder

General Info and Benefits

Alder (Alnus rubra)

General Description
• A relative of birch
• Almost white when freshly cut but dries to light brown with yellow or reddish tones
• Known for fairly straight grain with uniform texture
• Large clear boards are not easily found

Physical Properties
• A relatively soft hardwood of medium density that has low impact resistance and stiffness
• Janka Rating System = 590

Where It Grows
• The Pacific Northwest from southeast Alaska to central coastal California
• Nearly always found within 125 miles of the Pacific coast
• The most abundant commercial hardwood of the region
• Average height is 90 feet

Relative Abundance
• 2.9 percent of total U.S. hardwoods commercially available

Did You Know?
• The wood of preference for smoking salmon
• Fender Stratocaster & Telecaster guitar bodies made of alder since the 50s
• Knotty alder is a northwest favorite grade
• When stained, it blends with walnut, mahogany or cherry, earning its nickname “the great imitator”
  • Alder Select
    Alder Select
    Featuring consistent color and grain, Alder Select presents the least amount of natural characteristics, making it a great option for many applications. Its color can vary from a pale yellow to reddish brown, and has a soft, straight grained, even texture, making it a great choice for staining.
  • Alder Finish Grade
    Alder Finish Grade
    Alder Finish Grade is designed to be used when having your products finished by Decore-ative Specialties. With Finish Grade materials you will receive the material option that best suits the look you have selected, whether you choose a natural, stain, shader, or paint finish. As a result, the amount of natural color or grain may vary depending on the selected finish.
  • Alder Natural
    Alder Natural
    Alder Natural will have an allowance for color and grain variation in addition to most natural material characteristics. The material may contain small closed knots, pin knots and mineral streaking as well.
  • Alder
    Alder
    Offered in many of our components, moldings, accessories, and drawer boxes, Alder allows for some natural characteristics and variations in color.
  • Alder Rustic Knotty
    Alder Rustic Knotty
    Alder Rustic Knotty is a material grade characterized for its "open dead knots" which may contain cracks. There can be drastic color and grain variation, and mineral streaks. It may also contain pin knot clusters and large knots (no limit in size). INSIGHT: Some suppliers and vendors in the industry refer to this material grade as Knotty Alder. However, Decore-ative Specialties has named this grade Alder Rustic Knotty.
  • Alder Rustic Knotty Finish Grade
    Alder Rustic Knotty Finish Grade
    Alder Rustic Knotty Finish Grade is designed to be used when having your products finished by Decore-ative Specialties. With Finish Grade materials you will receive the material option that best suits the look you have selected, whether you choose a natural, stain, shader, or paint finish. As a result, the amount of natural color or grain may vary depending on the selected finish.
  • Alder Knotty
    Alder Knotty
    Alder Knotty is a material grade characterized for its "sound knots" which may contain "star cracks." There can be some color and grain variation, and limited small mineral streaks. Pin knot clusters are limited.
  • Alder Knotty Finish Grade
    Alder Knotty Finish Grade
    Alder Knotty Finish Grade is designed to be used when having your products finished by Decore-ative Specialties. With Finish Grade materials you will receive the material option that best suits the look you have selected, whether you choose a natural, stain, shader, or paint finish. As a result, the amount of natural color or grain may vary depending on the selected finish.
  • Alder Cabinet Grade
    Alder Cabinet Grade
    Used for Sheet Goods, Alder Cabinet Grade offers similar color and grain characteristics as Alder Natural, however this material is usually offered with more natural defects than a Select or Natural Grade. The Cabinet Grade typically is used to offer a more economical price for the lower grade face and back. Due to the higher allowance for natural characteristics this material is not recommended for clear finishes or use on End Panels.
  • Birch Natural Panel / Alder Natural Frame
    Birch Natural Panel / Alder Natural Frame
    A Birch Natural panel with Alder Natural frame will have an allowance for color and grain variation, along with most other natural characteristics. The material may contain smaller-sized closed knots, pin knots and mineral streaking. It is often used as a paint grade option for recessed panel doors.
  • Alder Veneer / MDF
    Alder Veneer / MDF
    Alder Unfinished Veneer on a MDF core will display a fairly consistent color and grain pattern. *May not be stocked at all facilities.