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Salix lasiolepis (Arroyo Willow)

Arroyo Willow

Salix lasiolepis, Arroyo Willow

Salix lasiolepis (Arroyo Willow) is an upright, multi-stemmed, large shrub or small deciduous tree with a broadly spreading, irregular to rounded crown. The dark green leaves are broadly lance-shaped, 6 in. long (15 cm), smooth or occasionally toothed along the margins, and whitish below. They flutter in the breeze, creating a rippling, bicolored effect. Arroyo Willow is dioecious with separate male and female plants. Fuzzy catkins appear with or before the leaves in late winter to late spring. The pollen-releasing male catkins are yellow, while the seed-producing catkins are green. Seeds are tiny and embedded in a mass of tangled hairs that lift and carry the seeds away on the air currents. Fast-growing and cold-hardy Arroyo Willow can be used as a specimen, in group planting, near bodies of water, as an informal hedge, or as a deciduous screen. Its suckering habit aids in erosion control and makes it useful for stabilizing streambanks and improving wildlife habitat. The catkins are a source of pollen for beneficial insects, and the catkins and buds are food for small game and songbirds in spring. Arroyo willow is a host plant for the Lorquin’s admiral, mourning cloak, and western tiger swallowtail butterflies.

  • Grows up to 10-35 ft. tall (3-11 m) and 10-25 ft. wide (3-8 m). Adds 36 in. per year (90 cm).
  • Performs best in full sun to part shade in moist to wet soils. Tolerant of most soil types and drainage classes where moisture is not limiting. Can withstand prolonged soil saturation and flooding.
  • Great for hedges and screens, wildlife gardens, or along streams or ponds.
  • Watch for aphids, scales, willow leaf gall sawfly, and poplar borers.
  • Native to Western and Southwestern United States.

Requirements

Hardiness 5 - 10
Climate Zones 1, 1A, 1B, 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Shrubs, Trees
Plant Family Salicaceae
Genus Salix
Common names Willow
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Height 10' - 35'
(3m - 10.7m)
Spread 10' - 25'
(3m - 7.6m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Average, High
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Poorly Drained
Characteristics Showy
Native Plants United States, Pacific Northwest, Rocky Mountains, California, Southwest, Oregon, Idaho, Washington, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Utah
Tolerance Wet Soil
Garden Uses Hedges And Screens, Ponds And Streams
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow
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Alternative Plants to Consider

Salix lasiandra (Shining Willow)
Salix exigua (Coyote Willow)
Salix nigra (Black Willow)
Salix purpurea (Purple Willow)
Salix ‘Golden Curls’ (Willow)
Salix gracilistyla ‘Melanostachys’ (Black Pussy Willow)

Find In One of Our Guides or Gardens

Pussy Willow: The Ultimate Guide to Growing and Caring for This Spring Beauty
Small Trees and Shrubs That Attract Birds
Green Canopy, Better World: Exploring the Benefits of Trees
Trees that Invite Wildlife to Your Garden
Create a Garden with Great Winter Interest
Native Plant Alternatives to Salix babylonica (Weeping Willow)
Native Plant Alternatives to Salix alba (White Willow)
Shrubs and Trees with Colorful and Distinctive Twigs in Winter
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.
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Requirements

Hardiness 5 - 10
Climate Zones 1, 1A, 1B, 2, 2A, 2B, 3, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 22, 23, 24
Plant Type Shrubs, Trees
Plant Family Salicaceae
Genus Salix
Common names Willow
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Height 10' - 35'
(3m - 10.7m)
Spread 10' - 25'
(3m - 7.6m)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Average, High
Soil Type Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Poorly Drained
Characteristics Showy
Native Plants United States, Pacific Northwest, Rocky Mountains, California, Southwest, Oregon, Idaho, Washington, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Utah
Tolerance Wet Soil
Garden Uses Hedges And Screens, Ponds And Streams
Garden Styles Prairie and Meadow
How Many Plants
Do I Need?
Explore Great Plant Combination Ideas
Salix (Willow)
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Salix (Willow)
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