Weeping Pussy willow tree as potted plant?

Discussion in 'Outdoor Gardening in the Pacific Northwest' started by robinella, Apr 20, 2017.

  1. robinella

    robinella New Member

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    I just bought a grafted weeping willow. I wonder what the rootstock might be which might indicate whether it would be happy in large pot?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 21, 2017
  2. Michael F

    Michael F Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Another willow, usually a vigorous, cheap-to-propagate hybrid willow like Salix x reichardtii.
     
  3. robinella

    robinella New Member

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    Thanks for that information. I see the Salix x reichardtii likes it damp so I will keep that in mind.
     
  4. Georgia Strait

    Georgia Strait Active Member

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    even tho you are planning on using a large pot for this - please make sure - esp given the root-stock - that this is NOwhere near your septic drainage system. Willow roots and drainage / septic don't work well together (or too well, as the case may be - it could be expensive for the homeowner)

    this sounds like a nice plant - i will look up google for some photos
     
  5. robinella

    robinella New Member

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    Thanks, I will keep that in mind.
     
  6. Michael F

    Michael F Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Yep, agree with Georgia Strait's warning.

    Disagree on its being a nice plant, though - it's nice for a week or two in spring with the catkins, but the foliage all through the summer is rather dull and boring, and after 3 or 4 years, it ends up being a dense twiggy mess of a mop-head with a lot of dead twigs in the middle. And watch out for any sprouts from the stem below the graft!
     
  7. robinella

    robinella New Member

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    Thanks for the caution. I have potted it up in a big pot with annuals around the bottom. Those giant catkins really caught my eye.

    A friend just gave me a cutting of creeping alpine willow. It has a lovely grey furry leaves with small catkins. Do you think it will also be a concern with an invasive root system?
     
  8. Georgia Strait

    Georgia Strait Active Member

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    I would think the alpine willow needs slightly diff conditions than the usual willow trees etc that we have commonly in gardens - but - I think all willows seek water. And their roots are very fine and invasive

    I love curly willow esp the upright curly branches - plus the color of the bark, the leaves, and it looks great in winter (no leaves) --- however - it is an overachiever (grows fast, takes over water systems, etc) - so I cut a few branches from friend's willow - then grow it in a big tall pot (no holes in it) full of water (no soil). It looks great. (when you put the branch in water, it makes roots - then you see how pervasive they are!) ... there are lots of large "architectural" pots out there that do NOT have holes in bottom --- I found some at Ikea Richmond last year - I think Cdn Tire has some this year (black color). I think this is the Ikea planter called Ostlig ÖSTLIG Plant pot - IKEA

    back to the pussy willow - you say that the catkins are what really appeals to you ---- one plant you might look-up is Contorted Hazel --- it's very English garden - has interesting shape, catkins, leaves, etc ... here is a good photo of one on this UK website The Winter Garden / J Parkers SCROLL down the page - look for photo of catkins.

    i know someone who grows this small tree near Kerrisdale - and also someone on Vanc Island near Victoria. It is very pretty - esp the curly branches and the catkins of course.
     
  9. robinella

    robinella New Member

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    I have the contorted willow and grow it as a shrub, cutting it back annually to use the beautiful branches as supports. We let one grow to a 40 foot tree whch was very attractive for many years but took it down to the ground this year. I am sure it will regrow. They are all planted on the edge of the forest so away from drainage systems. I also grow the contorted hazel, which is lovely in all seasons.

    I am very interested in growing the willow in water alone. Would it survive a winter growing that way or is that a spring to fall pot of willow? It would be great for a small garden. Even if it was seasonal, people growing willow would always have cuttings to share in the spring, I think.
     
  10. Georgia Strait

    Georgia Strait Active Member

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    yes indeed I just abandon it - as long as you don't deep-freeze in your zone

    the garden in which I do the plant pot of water plus willow is near a beach in greater Vancouver BC

    I would think similar to the northern Gulf Islands (Quadra)
     

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