Alphabetical Plant Listing

Salix gracilistyla 'Melanostachys' (Black Pussy Willow)

Black Pussy Willow, Black Willow


Salix gracilistyla 'Melanostachys' (Black Pussy Willow) is a bushy deciduous shrub boasting rich purple-black winter stems covered with a profusion of showy deep purple-black catkins adorned with red anthers. The anthers will later turn yellow as they mature. Produced by male plants, they are on display in early spring before the foliage emerges. The oval, glossy leaves are gray-green when young. This mounded willow is a pretty ornamental plant, thanks to its arching habit and remarkable display of catkins. In early spring, its flowering branches are in high demand.

  • Recipient of the prestigious Award of Garden Merit of the Royal Horticultural Society.
  • Grows up to 6-10 ft. tall and wide (2-3 m). May be cut to the ground every 3-5 years to keep a smaller shrub size.
  • Performs best in full sun in moderately fertile, moist, well-drained soils.
  • Easy to grow and easy to care for . Keep an eye out for aphids, caterpillars, leaf beetles, sawflies, willow anthracnose diseases and a rust.
  • Propagate by root softwood cuttings in early summer or hardwood cuttings in winter.
  • Prune every 1-3 years in March for colored winter shoots.

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Requirements

Hardiness 5 – 8
Heat Zones 5 – 8
Climate Zones 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Shrubs
Plant Family Salix - Willows
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 6' – 10' (180cm – 3m)
Spread 6' – 10' (180cm – 3m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Average
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Plant of Merit, Showy
Garden Uses Beds and Borders
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Coastal Garden, Informal and Cottage

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By Andrew Fletcher, Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 5 – 8
Heat Zones 5 – 8
Climate Zones 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Shrubs
Plant Family Salix - Willows
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early,Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 6' – 10' (180cm – 3m)
Spread 6' – 10' (180cm – 3m)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Average
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained
Characteristics Cut Flowers, Plant of Merit, Showy
Garden Uses Beds and Borders
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Coastal Garden, Informal and Cottage

Great Plant Combination Ideas with Salix - Willows

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