Alder Hardwood

Three Species – One Source.

Cascade Hardwood produces lumber in three different species, each with it's own range of custom grades. We are proud to be able to provide high quality Alder, Maple and Ash hardwood lumber to meet almost any requirement, and in almost any quantity.

Alder – The Versatile Hardwood

For workability, availability, and finishing, Alder is a very versatile and predictable material. It can be used alone or together with other species. Alder is a close or fine grained wood similar to cherry, birch and maple. It is used in both solid wood and veneer applications. Alder's fine homogeneous grain structure and the light uniform color of both heartwood and sapwood make it easy to form, fasten and finish.


This comparison chart shows that the total workability index of Alder is higher than most hardwoods. As you will see, Alder is an excellent choice for even the most complex machining, gluing and finishing projects.


species 1
character interest
color uniformity
joint strength
Alder 10 9 10 9.2 10 9 10 67.2
Basswood 8 7 9 7.5 8 8 9 56.5
Cherry, Black 10 10 9 9.6 9 9.6 9 66.2
Gum/Tupelo 9 7 7 8.5 8 9 8 56.5
Maple, Sugar 10 9 9 9.2 8 9.5 9 63.7
Maple, Silver 9 9 9 8 9 9 10 63.0
Poplar, Yellow 9 7 7 8.5 8 9 9 58.6
Walnut, Black 9 10 9 9.6 10 9 9 65.6

Common uses

Alder is a fantastic interior finish hardwood, and a stable frame and utility choice for furniture construction. You commonly see Alder used for cabinet doors, window construction, beam wraps, interior doors, trims, and mouldings. Alder is also used for guitar blanks, childern's toy construction, among many other applications. 


Finishing and staining

Of special interest is the superb finishing versatility of alder. Both the heartwood and sapwood are a light honey color. This light and uniform color is both easy to stain and highly valued in its natural state for today's clean modern designs. If staining is desired, Alder can easily match Cherry, Walnut, Pecan, Maple, Mahogany and many others. And since sap discoloration and mineral streaks are absent, Alder is easy to finish with clear 'fruitwood' stains.

A specialty productAlder grows only in the Pacific Northwest

Alder commercially grows only in the Pacific Northwest. Resource Managers have the opportunity to grow a product that will not have competition from other countries with less expensive management and harvest costs. This distinction between Douglas Fir and Hemlock, which are commodity products, and Alder, a specialty product, is why Alder prices have increased over the past 10 years while Douglas Fir and Hemlock prices decline.