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Salix alba var. sericea AGM

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© RHS 2002

Characteristics

Plant type

Tree

Habit

Bushy

Resilience

Hardiness

H6 (hardy - very cold winter)

Colour

Flower

Yellow in Spring

Foliage

Pale Grey/Silver in Spring and Summer

Size

Ultimate height

Higher than 12 metres

Ultimate spread

4-8 metres

Time to ultimate height

20-50 years


Preferred common name

silver willow

Family

Salicaceae


Salix are deciduous shrubs and trees of diverse habit, with simple leaves and tiny flowers in catkins, male and female usually on separate plants. Some are valued for their brightly coloured winter shoots, others for their foliage or showy male catkins

S. alba var. sericea is a bushy medium-sized deciduous tree with striking, silvery-grey, narrow-lanceolate leaves up to 10cm in length. Insignificant, slender, drooping yellow catkins in spring

Other common names

  • silver willow

Synonym(s)

  • Salix alba f. argentea
  • Salix alba 'Splendens'

How to grow

Sunlight

  • Full sun

Aspect

  • North-facing, East-facing, South-facing or West-facing
  • Sheltered or Exposed

Cultivation

Grow in moderately fertile deep soil in full sun. Very fast growing

Soil

  • Well-drained or Moist but well-drained
  • Acid, Neutral or Alkaline
  • Loam, Sand or Clay

Propagation

Propagate by softwood cuttings in early summer or hardwood cuttings in winter

Suggested planting locations and garden types

Coastal, Low Maintenance, Hedging/Screens or Wildlife Gardens


How to care

Pruning

Pruning group 1. Can be hard pruned to rejuvenate or pollard

Pests

Can get aphids, caterpillars, leaf beetles and sawflies

Diseases

May be affected by willow anthracnose diseases and a rust