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Salix caroliniana is often confused with:
Salix nigra Salix nigra
Plants that fill a similar niche:
Salix nigra Salix nigra
Aesculus sylvatica Aesculus sylvatica
Acer rubrum Acer rubrum

Coastal Plain Willow Salix caroliniana

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
SAY-liks kair-oh-lin-ee-AY-nah
Description

Carolina Willow is a deciduous tree that may grow to 20 feet tall. The leaves are alternate with a toothed margin, hairy stem, and pale-white underside. The bark is gray and smooth with scattered warts and horizontal lenticels. In spring, small, yellow flowers mature in great numbers. The small tree produces an egg-shaped capsule that matures in the summer.

The Coastal Plain Willow grows well in nutrient-poor soil.  It does well in wet areas like thickets and swamps and is right at home along a stream bank or next to a pond. In nature, it can be found growing near riverbanks, sandbars, interdune ponds, canal banks, and other wet sites. It grows near salt water, so has moderate salt spray tolerance but needs to be protected from direct salt spray by other vegetation.  It is not drought tolerant and requires consistently moist soils.  It can be grown from seed or cuttings, including root cuttings.

While it bares similarity to the also native Black Willow, the two species can be told apart by the leaves– S. caroliniana has wider leaves and a whitish underside.

Live stakes often available.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
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Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#native shrub#food source summer#sun tolerant#wetlands#sun#wet soils tolerant#wetland#flower#food source mid-summer#host#sunshine#Coastal OBL#large shrub#deciduous#deciduous shrub#summer fruits#riparian#food source pollen#food source#bird friendly#full sun#showy#green flowers#bark#coastal plant#full sun flowers#winter interest#low flammability#food source spring#piedmont#yellow flowers#spring fruits#cover plant#bees#wetland margins#wet sites#flowering#NC native#tree#food source herbage#buds#native#flowering shrub#nectar plant#moist#butterfly larvae#bee friendly#birds#deciduous tree#coastal#small and large mammals#flowering tree#larval host tree#small tree#catkins#flowers#fire resistant#butterfly friendly#native tree#spring interest#coastal areas#moths#salt tolerant#host plant#mountains#audubon#larval host plant#native garden#showy flowers#wildlife plant#moist soil#Piedmont Mountains OBL#full sunlight#larval host#summer interest#shrub#butterflies#coast#spring flowers
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Salix
    Species:
    caroliniana
    Family:
    Salicaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Root Cutting
    Seed
    Stem Cutting
    Fire Risk Rating:
    low flammability
    Wildlife Value:
    This tree provides some food and significant cover for wildlife. Its flowers attract bees. It is the only native larval host plant for viceroy (Limenitis archippus) butterflies. It is a host plant for the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, Mourning Cloak, Eastern Comma, Red-spotted Purple, and Viceroy butterflies. The buds and flower clusters are eaten by birds. It is also larval host for (Automeris io) moths.
    Play Value:
    Attracts Pollinators
    Wildlife Cover/Habitat
    Wildlife Food Source
    Wildlife Larval Host
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    fire in the landscape.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 15 ft. 0 in. - 20 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 15 ft. 0 in. - 30 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Native Plant
    Shrub
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Irregular
    Open
    Spreading
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Deep shade (Less than 2 hours to no direct sunlight)
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Wet
    Available Space To Plant:
    12-24 feet
    24-60 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Piedmont
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Spring
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
    Fruit Description:
    In North Carolina, the fruits are available from April to June.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    Green
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Catkin
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Description:
    The greenish-yellow catkins are semi-showy. In North Carolina, they are available from March to May.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    White
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Linear
    Leaf Margin:
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Temperate deciduous, light green, long and narrow leaves to about 8 inches long. They are wider than Black Willow leaves and have a whiteish underside.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Gray
    Surface/Attachment:
    Ridges
    Bark Description:
    Furrowed gray bark. Provides winter interest.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Buds:
    Scaly
    Stem Bud Scales:
    Enclosed in a single cap like scale
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Coastal
    Naturalized Area
    Pond
    Riparian
    Landscape Theme:
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Water Garden
    Winter Garden
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Butterflies
    Moths
    Small Mammals
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Fire
    Poor Soil
    Salt
    Wet Soil