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Balm-Of-Gilead Poplar

Populus candicans Ait.

Balm-of-Gilead  poplar
Figure 11.—Balm-of-Gilead poplar (Populus candicans)
Other common names.—Balsam poplar, balm buds.

Habitat and range.—The balm-of-Gilead tree, which has mostly escaped from cultivation, is found along roadsides or streams from Newfoundland to Minnesota and Georgia.

Description.—This is a large tree reaching a height of 100 feet with a maximum trunk diameter of about 6 1/2 feet with spreading branches, the young twigs slightly hairy, and with very resinous, fragrant buds. The broad, pointed leaves, 2 1/2 to 6 inches long, are somewhat heart-shaped at the base, fine toothed, dark green above, pale beneath, and hairy when young. The male and female flowers are borne in separate catkins 6 inches or less in length, which appear before the leaves.

Part used.—The leaf buds.

Sievers, A.F. 1930. The Herb Hunters Guide. Misc. Publ. No. 77. USDA, Washington DC.
Last update Wednesday, March 16, 1998 by aw