West Highland Flora

Purple Willow


Salix purpurea

 

Salix purpurea

Photo Carl Farmer
14 May 2003 Skeabost, Skye

Occasional on wet ground or beside water on less acid soils.

A leggy shrub to 3 m high.  Leaves 4-10 cm long on stalks 3-10 mm.

ID: Leaves more or less in opposite pairs rather than alternately arranged as in other willows.

Other features: Leaves hairless (except sometimes when very young), widest well above the middle, tapering to the base.  Young twigs purplish, in second year grey-brown or cane-coloured, all twigs hairless.  Catkins in early Spring, in more or less opposite pairs, on very short stalks, with black-tipped scales.

 

Salix purpurea

Photo Carl Farmer
14 May 2003 Skeabost, Skye

 

Salix purpurea

Photo Carl Farmer
14 May 2003 Skeabost, Skye
Catkin 20 x 8 mm
 

Fruiting catkins, black-tipped scales visible at base of some of the fruit.


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