Willow Cuttings

Dunbar Gardens willow cuttings

Dunbar Gardens willow cuttings

We sell willow cuttings for propagation. These hardwood cuttings are an easy and reliable way to grow new willow plantings. The willow varieties in the table have grown well at Dunbar Gardens in northwest Washington. Most of them are very useful for basket making; some are good for hedges, living fences, sculptural work, or garden ornamentals. There will be variation in the color of both the fresh and dried rods. Order instructions and prices are farther down the page.

Variety Species Height & color fresh Comments
Dicky Meadows S. purpurea 5-8’ light green & red Productive, great for baskets. Beautiful hedge.
Green Dicks S. purpurea 5-7’ olive green & red Great for weaving baskets
Leicestershire Dicks S. purpurea 5-7’ green to red Slender rods
Dark Dicks S. purpurea 6-8’ red Longer, larger with nice color
Brittany Greens S. purpurea 6-8’ mottled red over green Long, nice for weavers, but soft not as good for borders
Light Dicks S. purpurea 5-7’ pale red brown
Goldstones S. purpurea 6-8’ golden green Early catkins. Dried rods a vibrant green.
Jagiellonka S. purpurea 6-8’ brownish red Larger purpurea.
Richartii S. purpurea 5-7’ brown Very thin rods, a little branchy
Purpurea x daphnoides S. purpurea x daphnoides 5-8’ green to purple  Long slender rods.
Lambertiana S. purpurea ssp. lambertiana 6-8’ green to dark red Some branching, rather large but very nice to weave with
Polish purple S. ? 5-8’ green to red / purple Some branching; dries dark brown. Good weaver.
Eugenii S. purpurea ‘Eugenii’ 5-8’ pale green to red Good for weaving, long rods for living willow work.
Black Maul S. triandra 5-8’ brown Classic British basket willow
Noir de Villaines S. triandra 5-8’ dark brown Large but nice weaver. Living fences.
Noir de Touraine S. triandra 5-8’ dark brown Slender triandra. Living fences.
Whissender S. triandra 6-8’ green Dries light brown, nice aroma.
Harrison’s B S. X rubra 6-10’ reddish brown Stocky, but beautiful color and nice for weaving. Susceptible to fungal disease.
Harrison’s S. X rubra 7-10’ green Large, stocky rods for living willow projects. Dries black.
Continental Osier S. X rubra 7-10’ green Large rods for living willow, hurdles. Dries light brown.
Rubykins S. koriyanagi 7-10’ brown Early abundant pink catkins. Living willow work.
Flander’s Red S. X fragilis 3-8’ green turning red in winter Some branching, waxy stems.
Raesfeld S. X fragilis 3-8’ green to red Waxy olive green rods
Britzensis S. alba 5-9’ orange to red Branchy, beautiful color but difficult for basket borders. Lovely scent when dry.
Farndon S. X fragilis 6-9’ orange to red Great winter color. Good for side weavers.
Blue Streak S. acutifolia 6-10’ white bloom on green to purple Silvery white catkins. Nice ornamental.
Continental Purple S. daphnoides 6-10’ purple to black Beautiful dark stout rods.
Blackskin S. glabra 5-9’ black Black when fresh, soaks up dark red.
Nana S. purpurea ‘nana’ 2-5’ brown, red buds Very fine rods, small cuttings.

Other Salix varieties available: Lancashire Dicks, Welch, Reeks, Black German, Noir de Challans, Grisette Droda, Multinervis, Mawdesley, Kottendheider Weide, Long Bud, Bory Pescara, Forbyana, Irette, Fanny’s White, Basfordiana Farndon, Rouge Ardennais, Jaune de Falaise, Laurina, Natural Red, Wantage Hall, Fransgeel Rood, Bouton Aigu, Cardinalis

Steve’s favorites: Dicky Meadows, Goldstones, Polish Purple, Eugenii, Noir de Touraine, Whissender, Harrison’s, Harrison’s B, Britzensis, Natural Red, Blue Streak.

We make an effort to identify the willows correctly, but willows can be challenging. Willows are a large genus of dioecious plants (separate male and female plants). There are many hybrids and taxonomy is difficult. The common names are useful but there is always the possibility that plant material has been mislabeled. We make an effort to identify the varieties using the information that we received along with the original cuttings. Our emphasis is on passing along varieties that are useful and at a reasonable price.

willow cuttings rainbow

How to order:

We are happy to answer your questions about cuttings year round. We take orders for cuttings from January 1 – March 31. The best way to propagate willow is from dormant hardwood cuttings; so we have to limit the sales to these months. We will ship the cuttings from February through the end of May. We will only ship cuttings to addresses in the USA.

To order send an e-mail to steve@dunbargardens.com with the name of the varieties and the quantity of each you would like to order. Please include your shipping address with postal zip code. We will confirm the order by email with the total price including postage. We accept payment by cash, check or money order, and we can also bill you through PayPal.

Orders will be shipped Priority Mail. Orders can also be picked up at the farm after arranging the time. We will try to ship your order according to your preference. Please give us an idea of when you would like to receive the cuttings for planting.

willow cuttings packageOur production of willows for our basketmaking and classes allows us to select good sized cuttings to insure successful rooting in your garden. Our cuttings are 9-11 inches in length. Full size rods for living willow fences and structures 7-8 feet in length are available on the farm for pick-up.


Price is determined by the quantity of each variety ordered.

For 2014: 3 for $5.00 // 5 for $7.50 // 10 for $12.50 // 20 or more $1.00 each

Please remember that the quantity discount does not apply to the total number of cuttings but the total of each variety. However if you order more than 200 total cuttings the price will be $1.00 each for all.

Can’t decide which to order?

Basketmakers package: 10 each of Dicky Meadows, Dark Dicks, Polish Purple, Noir de Villaines, Whissender for $55.

Color package: 3 each of Goldstones, Richartii, Lambertiana, Noir de Touraine, Harrison’s B, Britzensis, Fransgeel Rood, Blue Streak, Blackskin for $30.

Please note that we may have to substitute varieties in the packages depending on availability when we ship.

willow cuttings orders by USPSShipping and handling costs are $15 for up to 75 cuttings; $20 for up to 150 cuttings; will quote a price for larger orders. Cuttings are shipped by USPS Priority Mail.

There is a minimum order of $20 not including shipping for mail orders.

Washington State residents only are required to pay sales tax which is determined by your location.

Have questions about cuttings or willow growing? Please e-mail steve@dunbargardens.com.

Prices for full size rods:

We sell full size rods for living willow structures and fences for $3.00 each on the farm.

harvesting willow bundles

Planting and growing tips:

Basket willows can be grown in a wide range of soil types, but they prefer well drained soils in full sun. The willows will grow in almost all areas of the US. Willows in general have a tendency to be variable to climate and growing conditions.

Your willow bed should ideally be free of any perennial weeds. Get your willow growing area ready the year before you plant. The soil is often too wet in the early spring when you will want to plant the cuttings. Some people choose to plant through a weed barrier fabric.

Spring is the best time to plant, March through May. Leave the cuttings in your fridge until you are ready to plant.

planting willow cuttingsWillow roots easily from cuttings. Plant by simply pushing the cuttings into the ground with the buds facing up. If the soil is rocky or compacted, make a hole with a dibber for each cutting. Try to plant the cuttings 6 to 8 inches into the ground. Leave 2 or 3 buds above the soil surface. Firm the soil around the planted cuttings.

Maintain and check for adequate soil moisture during the first summer. Minimize competition for water and sunlight from weeds or other plants. Mulching the plants can be helpful.

new willow planting

new willow planting at Dunbar Gardens

Spacing of the willows depends on several factors including how the willow will be harvested, how weeds will be controlled, variety, and soil fertility. We are using a spacing of 6 inches in the row by 32 inches between rows for most of our basket varieties. We have also used 12 inches by 24 – 36 inches. Wider spacing is appropriate for producing large rods for garden structures, trellises, or living fences; or when growing in poor soils. Hedges can be planted in a single row spaced from 12 to 24 inches; or a double row planted 24 inches apart with the plants offset.

coppiced basketry willowBasket willows are usually coppiced to the ground annually, including the first year. Only an inch of the original stem needs to be left above the soil the second spring. Find more info and photos about coppicing here on our blog. This approach will give you more straight and uniform rods. We do leave some rods to grow for two or three years for sticks, stakes, and for peeling. We have also found the variety “Nana” to grow well being cut as a mini pollard. You can choose to grow all your willows as pollards which is an attractive landscape feature.

Attractive hedges can be produced by coppicing alternate plants in alternate years just before the willow leafs out in the spring. The result is a hedge that will look good year round; highlighting the winter rods that are more colorful in the first and second years growth.
Take a look at our webpage about basketry willow for some more information and photos of the willow at Dunbar Gardens: basketry willow.

Spike inspects the basketry willow

Spike inspects the basket willow

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