Weeping Willow Sapling Trees
Salix sepulcralis ChrysocomaSapling Trees
- The classic weeping willow. Loves wet sites.
- Sizes: Saplings & Standard Trees.
- Good screening tree, very ornamental.
- Max. Height: 20m
- RHS Award of Garden Merit
- Bareroot Delivery Only: Nov-Mar.
Salix sepulcralis Chrysocoma Saplings
Delivered by Mail Order Direct from our Nursery with a Year Guarantee
Weeping Willow, Salix sepulcralis Chrysocoma, is a famous, large waterside tree with a beautiful canopy of hanging golden-yellow stems and leaves in spring. This is the only golden leaved weeping willow variety. The rich yellow colour of the young stems is really visible in late spring when they are covered in catkins and the leaves are still small. The catkins appear just as the foliage begins to break in spring, providing a good early food source for bees. The leaves mature into a deep green in summer and then the yellow colour returns in autumn. It will grow on any fertile soil, but it is not suitable for dry, shady or coastal sites. It is a good windbreak tree.
The plants on this page are young saplings. You can also buy larger Weeping Willow trees here.
Weeping Willow plants are only delivered bareroot, during winter (Nov-March).
Choosing a size:
When you are ordering a large quantity of Weeping Willow for a big planting project, we suggest that you buy smaller plants. They are cheaper than large plants, easier to handle and more likely to cope well with poor conditions.
Buy the larger, 120-150 cm tall saplings if you want a tall tree quickly.
All of our young trees and shrubs are measured by their height in centimetres above the ground (the roots aren't measured).
General description of Salix sepulcralis Chrysocoma plants:
The tiny seeds that are released in autumn have a fluffy white beard to help them travel in the wind. They only grow well on wet mud, so unwanted seedlings won't be an issue for most gardens.
Bear in mind that large old willows are prone to falling apart a bit, dropping branches in a high wind, so don't put a shed underneath an established tree!
Weeping willow trees don't live very long in tree terms: after about 60 years or so, they inevitably begin to sicken and slowly lose the strength to go on. This slow decay usually adds character to the tree, making it gnarled and scarred. There is no point trying to save them, it's just how they are. The bright side is that these are one of the easiest trees to propagate ever. Just take a twig from the previous season's growth and poke it in some moist ground, anytime from late spring to autumn. That's it: it doesn't even really matter which way up you put it in!
History & uses of Salix sepulcralis Chrysocoma
This willow is a hybrid between Salix alba 'Vitellana', a white willow cultivar, and the Chinese willow, Salix babylonica / matsudana. It was known as Salix alba Tristis in the past; Tristis is Latin for sad and hence weeping. It was bred in 1888 and brought to Britain from Germany about 20 years later. It won the RHS award of garden merit in 1984. This tree is very popular and can be found in parks and gardens all over the world.
Notes on planting Weeping Willow:
Weeping Willow trees will grow well in any damp or wet soil where there is more than half a day of full sun. They tolerate chalk, but will grow best on slightly acid soils and heavy clay.
They will not grow well if the site is dry, shady or on the coast.
Important Note on Weeping Willow Roots:
This will become a fairly wide, spreading tree in time and its roots tend to be quite shallow.
What they lack in depth, they make up for anti-social behaviour: we advise against planting these trees near old buildings, vulnerable walls or drains.
You will also have a tough time growing most things near a Weeping Willow, as they will snatch all the moisture from the soil - it's best to just give them plenty of room.
This will be much less of an issue if they are planted by water.
Prepare your site before planting:
It is good to dig over the area where you intend to plant several months in advance. Destroy the weeds first: nettles, brambles and ground elder are tough and a glyphosate based weed-killer is the best way to remove them. Then dig the soil over; remove rocks, roots and other rubbish. Mix in well rotted compost or manure down to the depth of about 2 spades.
If you have a heavy clay soil, it might be too difficult to dig over for most of the year. Heavy clay is fertile soil, so you don't really need to improve it; killing the weeds is still necessary.
Remember to water establishing plants during dry weather for at least a year after planting.
Prepare your site for planting by killing the weeds and grass with Neudorff WeedFree Plus.
If you are planting in an area with rabbit and/or deer, you will need to use a protective plastic spiral for each plant, supported by a bamboo cane.
If your soil quality is poor, we recommend using mycorrhizal "friendly fungi" on the roots of new trees and shrubs.
You can also improve your soil with bonemeal organic fertiliser and Growmore.
After you plant your Weeping Willow trees, the most important thing to do is water them in dry weather. You will also need to weed around the plants. Both of these will be necessary for at least a year after planting.
Water thoroughly but not too often: let the soil get close to drying out before watering your plants again.
Special notes on caring for Weeping Willow:
Weeping Willow is a very tough plant that shouldn't need special attention once it has established. If pruning is necessary, it is best do it in winter. Always hire a tree surgeon to remove large branches.
Hygiene & Diseases:
Dead, damaged or diseased wood can be pruned off as soon as it appears.
Disinfect your pruning tools between every cut if there is any sign of disease.
Burn or dispose of any diseased material, do not compost it.