BALSAM POPLAR - POPULUS BALSAMIFERA

balsam poplar flowers

​​Common Name: balsam poplar

Scientific Name: 
Family: Salicaceae 
Genus: Populus
Species: balsamifera

Hardiness Zone:
Height: 50 to 80 ft
Width: 25-40 ft

Description: Balsam poplar is a fast-growing species native to Alaska, Canada, and the northern part of the continental United States that can grow to 80’ tall. The buds, one of balsam poplar’s most distinctive features, are large and pointed. They are also gummy, and sometimes release a red resin. Balsam poplar twigs are red-gray to brown-orange, and the bark is a gray-green that darkens with age. This tree’s leaves are 3-6” long and shaped like a vertically stretched spade with slightly jagged edges. The leaf coloration is dark green on the upper side and white on the lower side. Balsam poplar seeds are carried in the wind by cottony tufts of hair, and can be seen floating around early in the summer. The flowers are small, inconspicuous, greenish yellow, and in long hanging clusters. ​

balsam poplar foliage
balsam poplar foliage
balsam poplar bud