Big-toothed aspen (Populus grandidentata)

big-toother aspen leaves

Click on the images help you identify an Big-toothed aspen.



Can grow to a height of 60' to 80' with a diameter of 10"to 20"; slender rather rigid branches create narrow round-topped crown.


Smooth, gray or yellowish-green; furrowed and dark brown at base of old trees.


Simple, alternate on stem, 2" to 4"; coarse-toothed; dark green upper surface turning yellow in autumn; appears one to tow weeks later than that of quaking aspen, and at first is silvery white. Buds are light gray, downy, and larger than those of quaking aspen.

Fruit (seed)

Small, cotton like capsules grouped in 3" to 6" catkins, easily carried by the wind for long distances; matures in late spring.


Found on sandy or rich soils that are moist; common, except in the southwestern and northeastern parts of Minnesota; shade-intolerant, very fast-growing.

Wood uses

Straight-grained, fine- and uniformly textured, light weak, soft, shrinks on drying; used as a primary raw material source for pulp and paper and oriented strand board; also used in the production of lumber, matchsticks, lath, and shavings. the residue generate with these products is used in the production of densified wood fuels (pellets) or burned directly as green fuel.

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