montage of four images showing four-leafed green plants with tiny yellow flowers; two light purple, six-petalled flowers; a thin, red-leafed plant bearing shiny red berries; and green leaves curled into tight cylinder shapes

NPS Photos / K. Jalone


The Lake Clark area is special for its diversity of flowers, plants, trees, and lichen in a relatively small area. Four of the five biotic communities found in Alaska - coastal, lakes/rivers/wetlands, tundra, and forest - exist in the park.

For more information on the flowers, plants and trees found in the Lake Clark National Park and Preserve, visit the following websites:

Common Plants of Lake Clark

Plants are listed alphabetically by their common name, with scientific name following.

Alder (Alnus virdis)
Alder is a woody shrub that grows in drainages and on mountainsides in the park. Its leaves are dark green and have raised veins on the underside. The bark is a silvery-gray. Clusters of small green cones appear in the spring and turn hard and brown in the fall.

Alder stands, colloquially known as "tanglefoot," are often difficult to hike through, especially with a pack. Some stands are so thick they are impenetrable. If you have to hike through alders try to follow game trails, but be alert for wildlife.

Last updated: April 14, 2015

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