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JPR Environmental
The Malthouse
GL10 3DL

Tel: 01453 822 584
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living willow structures

Salix purpurea - Purple Willow

Here are 2 pictures of Salix purpurea, Purple Willow.

Salix purpurea half.jpg (47263 bytes)

Picture of Salix purpurea in July

Salix purpurea Purple Willow closeup half.jpg (15505 bytes)

Picture of Salix purpurea in March

JPR Environmental is happy for you to download and copy these images for your own use should you want. However,  we would ask you to credit us as the source of the image.


Salix purpurea is a shrub that can sometimes grow in a low and spreading manner no more than 1.5m high and at other time more robust growing as rounded bush or small tree to 5m high. The bark of the Purple willow is grey and smooth and yellow when the out layer is peeled off. Twigs are glabrous, slender, tough and flexible usually yellow or grey but sometimes tinged with red or purple.

Leaves of Salix purpurea are oblong, oblanceolate or narrowly obovate and variable, 2-20cm, in length and, 0.5-3cm, in width. They are a dull dark green above and paler and shinier below.

Catkins appear before the leaves in March or April, sometime as late as May in the north. They are between 1.5 and 3cm long, densely flowered and black.


Salix purpurea is a locally common shrub of river margins and wet ground widely distributed throughout Britain and Ireland. It can be seen, far from habitation or cultivation, by streams or on damp hillsides. There are a number of varieties grown for basket making across the south of England.


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