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Weeping Pussy Willow Care: Tips For Growing Weeping Pussy Willows

Weeping Pussy Willow Care: Tips For Growing Weeping Pussy Willows


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By: Teo Spengler

If you are ready for an unusual tree that will create excitement every spring, consider the weeping pussy willow. Read on for more weeping pussy willow information, including tips on how to grow weeping pussy willows.

What is a Weeping Pussy Willow?

If you are looking for a new addition to your garden that will create early spring interest in the landscape, look no further. Start growing weeping pussy willows (Salix caprea ‘Pendula’). According to weeping pussy willow information, it’s a small willow with pendulous branches. Every year in late winter or early spring, those branches overflow with pussy willows, those fuzzy gray catkins soft to the touch as kittens.

These lovely little trees will fit into almost any garden. You can start growing weeping pussy willows in a small corner space, since they only grow to 8 feet (2.4 m.) tall with a spread of up to 6 feet (1.8 m.). These trees thrive both in sunny sites and sites with partial shade. This willow will need some sun in the afternoons, however. Sited appropriately, weeping pussy willow care is minimal.

How to Grow Weeping Pussy Willows

If you are wondering how to grow weeping pussy willows, take your climate into consideration. The trees thrive in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 4 through 8.

To start growing weeping pussy willows, plant the trees in spring or autumn. If you are planting more than one, space them 5 to 10 feet (1.5 to 3 m.) apart. For each plant, dig holes considerably larger than the root ball of the plant, up to two times as wide and deep. Position the tree at the same level in the soil as it was planted previously, then fill the hole with soil, tamping it down with your hands.

You’ll have an easier time with weeping pussy willow care if you build walls of soil to keep water near the root ball to create a kind of watering bowl. Fill the bowl with water immediately after planting.

When you are growing weeping pussy willows, you may need to stake them until the roots are anchored. If you decide to stake, insert the stake before you plant the tree.

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Weeping Pussy Willow

Last Updated: May 5, 2015 | by Mike McGroarty

I've you've never seen a Weeping Pussy Willow tree, you're in for a treat. These are very unique plants, and they are easy to grow from scratch. Rooting weeping pussy willows cuttings is pretty easy, and the rooted cuttings can be trained into interesting weeping trees.

Weeping Pussy Willow looks just like a regular Pussy Willow shrub, except the branches grow inverted. If you can find one of these interesting plants at a garden center, they are usually rather pricey. $50.00 to $100.

Typically the weeping variety is grafted or budded onto an upright Willow stem, but what I do is take a cutting from the weeping pussy willow, root the cutting, then train my new plant to grow as a single stem tree, then once it's about 5 or 6 feet high I train it to develop a weeping head.

Take a look at these photos:

Weeping Pussy Willow is actually a fast growing plant. As you can see in this photo I planted the rooted cutting in my garden, then start training it to grow as a single stem plant by tying it to a stake.

In this photo you can see how I train these plants, intentionally putting a few crooks in the main stem to give them additional character. As if they are not already interesting enough.

When you grow Weeping Pussy Willow from cuttings it's more difficult to get them to stand upright on their own, but there are many interesting ways to stake them or anchor them to a wall that makes them even more fun. Some people even plant two or three together and braid them which makes the stem more rigid.

Cuttings can be easily rooted if you take them during the summer months and simply put them in a Homemade Plant Propagation System like the one on this page.

A little closer look at one of my Weeping Pussy Willow creations:

These plants are really fun to grow! If you have a friend that has a Weeping Pussy Willow maybe you can take a few cuttings. If not, you'll have to check around with your local garden centers to see if you can find one you can buy.

I normally root Weeping Pussy Willow as softwood cuttings, but since I had to go out and trim my plants so I could take the photos you see here, I decided to see if I could root them as hardwood cuttings. You can see those photos on this page: Hardwood cuttings of deciduous plants.

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Weeping Pussy Willow Information - What Is A Weeping Pussy Willow Tree - garden

A unique weeping garden accent shrub, typically grafted onto a standard from where it weeps strongly downward, large fuzzy catkins are extremely showy in late winter use only as a solitary in the garden to draw attention

Weeping Pussy Willow features delicate tan catkins along the branches from late winter to early spring before the leaves. The flowers are excellent for cutting. It has dark green foliage throughout the season. The pointy leaves turn yellow in fall. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.

Weeping Pussy Willow is a multi-stemmed deciduous shrub with a rounded form and gracefully weeping branches. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This shrub will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and is best pruned in late winter once the threat of extreme cold has passed. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration

Weeping Pussy Willow is recommended for the following landscape applications

  • Accent
  • General Garden Use

Weeping Pussy Willow will grow to be about 6 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 8 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 1 foot from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a fast rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 40 years or more.

This shrub does best in full sun to partial shade. It is quite adaptable, prefering to grow in average to wet conditions, and will even tolerate some standing water. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America.


Propagating Pussy Willows

Pussy willows root so readily that cut branches can simply be inserted into moist soil in summer. Roots will develop within a few weeks.

Take a cutting that is about as thick as a pencil and at least 1 foot long from the new growth, not the older, gray-colored branches. Insert the cut (bottom) end into the ground, with a few inches underground for stability and a couple of nodes (the little bumps along the branch) showing above ground.

If you do not wish to wait until summer, bring your pussy willow cuttings inside and root them in water transplant outside when the danger of frost is past.


Plant Finder

Weeping Pussy Willow in bloom

Weeping Pussy Willow in bloom

Weeping Pussy Willow flowers

Weeping Pussy Willow flowers

A unique weeping garden accent shrub, typically grafted onto a standard from where it weeps strongly downward, large fuzzy catkins are extremely showy in late winter use only as a solitary in the garden to draw attention

Weeping Pussy Willow features delicate tan catkins along the branches from late winter to early spring before the leaves. The flowers are excellent for cutting. It has dark green foliage throughout the season. The pointy leaves turn yellow in fall. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.

Weeping Pussy Willow is a multi-stemmed deciduous shrub with a rounded form and gracefully weeping branches. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This shrub will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and is best pruned in late winter once the threat of extreme cold has passed. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration

Weeping Pussy Willow is recommended for the following landscape applications

  • Accent
  • General Garden Use

Weeping Pussy Willow will grow to be about 6 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 8 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 1 foot from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a fast rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 40 years or more.

This shrub does best in full sun to partial shade. It is quite adaptable, prefering to grow in average to wet conditions, and will even tolerate some standing water. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America.


Watch the video: Lowes Greenhouse - Weeping Pussy Willows


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