Willow

Salix alba
Salicaceae, Willow Family
Willow
Willow
For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour my Spirit upon your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants. They shall spring up among the grass like willows by flowing streams. This one will say, ‘I am the Lord's,’ another will call on the name of Jacob, and another will write on his hand, ‘The Lord's,’ and name himself by the name of Israel.”
Isaiah 44:3-5 ESV
Willow
And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before the Lord your God seven days.
Leviticus 23:40 KJV

Cultural Information

TypeOrnamental Tree
Height30 to 60 feet
Soilany soil type abundantly moist
Exposurefull sun
Leavesnarrow, elongated, medium green about 4 inches long with central rib and whiteish underside
Flowerscatkin-type, fuzzy, flourescence in short racemes appearing in early spring; trees are male or female

Planting Tips

  • cold hardy to zone 2
  • plant willow trees where there is an abundance of water, near a pond or stream, or in a low spot where water collects
  • willow roots are agressive, so situate your willow far from foundations or septic systems
  • willow trees drop leaves and branchlets on-going through the spring and summer; plant near easy clean-up surfaces
  • willows are deciduous with uninteresting fall color
  • despite these faults, willows are graceful, pleasing, and welcoming in a landscape panorama; plant where the full form of the tree can be seen to enjoy

Garden to Table

  • willow branches wilt quickly making them not the best greenery choice for cut bouquets
  • instead, cut long branches of willow and mass together lengthwise as a table runner
  • alternately, cut a few branches just before dinner and weave among votive candles as a center piece
  • several freshly cut willow branchlets striped of leaves can act as string or rope to tie together trellis', stakes, or temporary garden structure for growing annuals
  • wrap stripped branches in a spherical mass and place in vase to hold bouquet flowers in place
  • weave stripped branches into wreath forms for decorating, see Pinterest ideas
  • willow branches are considered part of the "4 species" held together in celebration at the Feast of Tabernacles

Additional Resources

See Blog Posts on Willow
The Lord is ready to quench us, knowing the yearning of our whole being to feel soothed (Isaiah 44:2; Psalm 62:8) and properly hydrated. God has a long history of providing water to those who are thirsty and fearful in their desert travel (Exodus 17:6).
-from the NIV God's Word for Gardeners Bible
Willow
And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before the Lord your God seven days.
Leviticus 23:40 KJV

Photo Credits

©2006 Thomas Quine Flickr Creative Commons Weeping willow
©2009 Alicia Bramlett Flickr Creative Commons Jordan River Jordan on the right, Israel on the left The banks of the Jordan are thick with willow, poplar, and oleander
©2017 Shelley S. Cramm homegrown branches and fruit commemorate the Feast of Tabernacles celebrating - willow, vitex, dwarf myrtle, elaeagnus 'olive martini' with meyer lemon from my mother-in-law's garden
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