Bigtooth aspen

Prepared by Jennifer L. D’Appollonio, Assistant Scientist, University of Maine, Orono, ME 04469. Updated February 2018.

Scientific name: Populus grandidentata Michx.

Common name(s): bigtooth aspen, big-toothed aspen, large-tooth aspen, large-tooth popple

Links: USDA PLANTS Profile, NPIN Profile, Go Botany

Images: (to see enlargements [PC]: click on image, then right click and choose “view image”)


-Salicaceae family

-deciduous hardwood


-leaves are heavily toothed

-the stem petiole is flattened

-mature trees can reach up to 24 m in height and 25cm in DBH

– may be confused with and hybridizes with P. tremuloides, which also occurs in wild blueberry fields; see left sidebar and Flora Novae Angliae information on Go Botany webpage



-sucker shoots


-sandy/loamy soils

-moist fertile soils

-aspen forests

-shade intolerant


-reacts well to thinning

-clear cutting is the best harvesting method

-fire can easily kill this species

-deer heavily browse young trees

-damaging agents

  • Hypoxylon canker
  • forest tent caterpillar
  • poplar borer

Natural History:

-native to northeastern United States and southeastern Canada



Haines, A., Farnsworth, E., Morrison, G., & New England Wild Flower Society. (2011). New England Wildflower Society’s Flora Novae Angliae: A manual for the identification of native and naturalized higher vascular plants of New England. Framingham, MA: New England Wild Flower Society. p. 832.

USDA. “Bigtooth Aspen.” Populus Grandidentata Michx, U.S. Forest Service ,