The alder – alnus glutinoas – is a native to Britain, growing to a height of 20m and living up 150 – 200 years. It has nitrogen fixing nodules on its roots and this can improve the soil in which it is growing. Alders often grow in areas of poor soil making the soil fit for other plants. It grows happily in damp areas where its roots can help prevent erosion. These roots also make ideal places for otter holts. Adapted to the damp, its wood can withstand or and has traditionally been used for water pipes, foundation piles (much of Venice is built on alder piles), boats and sluice gates. Today alder is often used to make plywood.
Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. Philippians 2:4
The best way not to feel hopeless is to get up and do something. Don’t wait for good things to happen to you. If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope. Barack Obama