What Is Willow?

Willow tree is one of the most common plants in your garden. It grows in almost every kind of soil and climate. Its bark is used for building materials such as roofing shingles or it can be used for other purposes like making paper or clothing. It produces white flowers which are edible when cooked.

How To Grow Willow Tree Cuttings?

The process of growing willow tree cuttings is quite simple. First, you need to collect some fresh willow leaves. You can use any type of willow leaf but they have to be young and tender ones. The easiest way is to gather them from the wild or buy them at a nursery store. Once you have collected enough leaves, place them into a container. Next, cover the container with plastic wrap and put it somewhere where you won’t disturb it. After a few days, remove the plastic wrap and check if there are still any willow leaves inside the container. If so, congratulations! You’ve successfully grown willow tree cuttings! Now comes the hard part; watering your new plantlings regularly.

What Kind Of Soil Should I Use?

I’m going to put it bluntly; you don’t need soil to grow willow cuttings. All they need is water, sunlight, and space. There is no need to fertilize them either since the fertilizer you put into the water will be enough for them.

How To Water Your Cuttings?

After harvesting your willow leaves, fill up a container with water. For every liter of water put in 1 teaspoon of willow tree fertilizer. Stir it until the fertilizer has completely dissolved. Now place your cuttings firmly into the container. Make sure the cut end is at least half a centimeter under the water. After a few days, the leaves of your plant will begin to turn yellow and shrink. This is completely normal so don’t worry about it. Just remember to keep an eye on the water level and add more water every now and then.

How To Gather More Willow Cuttings?

It is extremely important to keep the willow cuttings hydrated since they can easily dry out. If this occurs, they won’t grow into full sized willows. As a general rule of thumb, you should gather more fresh leaves to replace the old ones every week. If you’re using store bought willow leaf clusters, then make sure to change about a quarter of them every other day. The best way to gather more leaves is to hold the tip of a leaf cluster in one hand. Then, using a pair of scissors or a knife, cut the cluster off the main willow branch. You should get about 3 cuttings from every cluster.

How To Prune A Willow Tree?

The first thing you need to do is decide what shape you want your tree to be. After this, use a saw to cut off any unwanted branches. You do not need to cut them flush with the main trunk since the wounds will heal over time. Just make sure that they are at least a few centimeters away from it. After you are finished, remember to apply tree wound wax to prevent insects or disease from attacking the exposed wood.

When Should I Harvest My Willow Tree Cuttings?

If you don’t want to bother with all the maintenance, then you can harvest your willow tree cuttings in the late summer. This way, your cuttings will already be quite old and large enough that you won’t need to water them or replace the leaves as often. The only downside is they might not grow as tall as they would when harvested in springtime.

How Do I Prepare The Cuttings For Planting?

Once your cuttings have grown to about a foot or half a meter in height, its time to plant them in the soil. Since willows thrive in moist dirt, make sure you have picked a plot of land near a body of water such as a lake, river, or stream. If there isn’t any nearby then you might want to build a small dam on your property. Once this is finished, its time to create some drainage by digging small holes. These will be used to hold the cuttings before they are planted.

Once your holes are dug, fill them with water and leave them there for at least a few hours or even a whole day. This will cause the water level to rise slightly and begin to saturate the soil. After this, completely drain the holes and remove all of the cuttings you wish to plant. Make sure to leave at least an inch of the stem buried or they won’t grow! You then want to plant them so only the top inch or so is above ground level.

Finally, it is time to put the remaining soil back in the hole. Tamp it down firmly so there aren’t any air pockets, and just make sure there aren’t any cuttings sticking out.

How Will I Know If They Are Growing?

After your willows have been planted, it can take a while before they start showing any signs of life. Sometimes you won’t be able to notice anything for up to a few months. However, if you look closely at the stem you should be able to see a tiny white line forming. It may be almost invisible to the naked eye, but it should be there. This is called the “halting zone” and signifies that the cutting is beginning to grow. After a few more months, this tiny white line will begin growing green as the rest of the stem does the same. It can take up to a year before your willow tree is ready to harvest.

Remember to water your cuttings if you see the top half beginning to shrivel up. If it seems too dry to the touch then pour some water on it, but don’t overdo it or you could kill it. You can also use a small amount of fertilizer if you want, but I have found that this isn’t necessary.

How Do I Know When It Is Ready To Be Cut?

Your willow tree is ready to be harvested once the stem has grown past the top layer of soil. This way, the extra stem that was put below ground level will be able to continue growing without being exposed to the outside environment. You may also want to harvest your tree earlier than this if you notice a problem such as disease or insects, or if it is deformed.

Once you have chosen to harvest your tree, gently pull it away from the soil so as not to damage the roots. Use a sharp blade such as an axe or knife to cut at the base of the trunk, and then you can either leave it here to begin drying out, or you can transport it back home if you are planning on using it right away.

Willows are able to be used while they are still green. They are a very flexible material and can be used to make anything from fishing rods to baskets. You may even want to experiment with what you can make!

WARNING: NEVER EAT A WILLOW TREE NO MATTER WHAT ANYONE TELLS YOU! THE RESIDUE FROM THE OILS USED TO TRIM THE STEMS CAN BE VERY TOXIC AND CAN MAKE YOU VERY ILL. ONLY EAT THE FRUIT!

If you have enough willow trees, and have dried them out for long enough, then you should have a good supply of willow wands that you can use yourself or sell to others. Remember that you can use the leftover tree stumps to regrow more willow wands!

Perhaps one day people will praise you as a willow wands master for discovering such a wonderful way of creating such an incredible product!

Can You Root A Pussy Willow Branch: Growing Cuttings From Pussy Willow on igrowplants.net

I’m sure others will be excited to read your book on how to grow willow trees as well. I’d buy a copy!

Good luck, and happy wanding!

From your friend,

Owen

Remember to send a thank you letter to Owen for this very helpful guide!

Note: This book is free to take, but feel free to leave a tip.

Sources & references used in this article:

Co-solvent system of [EMIM] Ac and DMF to improve the enzymatic saccharification of pussy willow (Salix gracilistyla Miq.) by SY Han, CW Park, NH Kim, SH Lee – Holzforschung, 2017 – degruyter.com

Selection of Willows for floral and stem quality and continuous production sequence in temperate North America by Y Kuzovkina, MF Quigley – HortTechnology, 2004 – journals.ashs.org

Woody ornamentals for cut flower growers by JH ROSENGREN – Science and Children, 1966 – JSTOR

Introduced willows can become invasive pests in Australia by C Casey – Landscape Architecture Magazine, 2011 – JSTOR

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