Cercocarpus Montanus (Alderleaf Mountain Mahogany)


Looking for a hardy plant that is awesome at fixing nitrogen and even more awesome at revegetation and erosion control? The Alderleaf Mountain Mahogany does just this because it tolerates both hot/dry and cooler/light shade sites and it is pH adaptable. They are also native to almost all of the western United States.

Cercocarpus Montanus is a large shrub/small tree that averages 8-12 ft. tall and 4-8 ft. wide. It is deciduous but barely, most describe it as “almost evergreen” because it often keeps its dark green leaves throughout the year. It only drops all of its leaves due to extreme winter or extreme drought but fully recovers once appropriate. This is likely why some call it Hardtack Mahogany because it has a unique hardiness that can withstand cutting, fire, drought, and heavy browsing.

Often referred to as Silverleaf Mountain Mahogany due to its leaf’s fuzzy silver undersides, these shrubs also have interesting fruit. They are curling, feathery, whips that can be carried long distances by wind. After falling to the ground, the oddly shaped fruits twist into the soil.

It should be noted that deer will munch on these quite regularly but, these plants don’t mind, they treat it as pruning and will come back.

Love this plant? We also carry the Curl Leaf Mountain Mahogany to add to your collection of drought-tolerant plants.

Fun fact: Native Americans used the wood to make bows and spearheads.


Colorado Hardy Plants are just that… hardy! We have sought out plant varieties that provide low maintenance, use little or no water once established, and are simply hardy enough to grow where others don’t.

We grow and ship our plants in 5″ or quart-size (in certain varieties) plastic containers. Knowing that the root system is the most important part of the plant we guarantee. our plants to have a large root system that fills the container.

CHP is a small family operation! We propagate, pot, water, prune, and personally package the pants you order from us. Most of our plants are grown from cuttings taken from the plants or seeds collected nearby the nursery at an elevation of 6300 ft. Our weather is extreme with temps below 0 are common in the winter and intense sunlight all summer long. We don’t grow plants in heated greenhouses, they have to be able to survive the elements!

Please note that deciduous plants ordered in the winter months and early spring will have been pruned a minimum of 30% compared to photos and may have no leaves

Our nursery is also licensed and inspected by the Colorado Department of Agriculture, Nursery Division and holds a current Japanese Beetle Certificate. We only ship USPS Priority Mail, so your plants are sure to arrive quickly. You’ll note in our feedback that our shipping process is a sight to behold. We love our customers so please don’t hesitate to reach out.

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