PussyWillows from seed?

lblack61(z5 NY)February 27, 2006

I recall people always having pussy willows when I was a child. I have yet to see any around as an adult.

Is it possible to grow these from seed? I'd love to WS so some...can't seem to find anything but potted plants of them (for big bucks)

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webkat5(Z6a MO)

Pussy Willow is extremely easy to start from cuttings...
This spring, find something to trade and then place a 'wanted' thread on the plant exchange....
Tons of traders have it for exchange....I just started a weeping variety last season and if it wasn't still small, I would share it with you...

Just stick it down into some moist soil, keep it moist (just leave it outside in partial sun) and soon you will see new growth starting...leave it for another month or so and then plant it in the ground and keep it well watered...they can take a lot of water.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2006 at 4:40PM
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Nurmey(5 Omaha, NE)

I don't know about willow seeds having never tried it but most thing do grow that way so I don't know why it wouldn't work.

Rooting hormone is made from willow so it's VERY easy to start them from cutting. Stuff a branch in some soil and you will have a new plant.

I have seen 4" x 4" willow fence posts sprout branches and leaves after the posts had been set years before. It was a pretty funny looking fence!

    Bookmark   February 27, 2006 at 6:43PM
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lblack61(z5 NY)

Thanks for the info...not sure if I'm ready to go the trade route yet-- I have to get my seed collecting abilities up to par (AND post on my trade page. Someday)


    Bookmark   March 1, 2006 at 4:57PM
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I have some rooted pussy willows I will send you for postage if you are interested. I will send them bare root in a padded envelope so it shouldn't be much postage.


    Bookmark   March 2, 2006 at 7:26PM
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lblack61(z5 NY)

Wow...good thing I checked here today! Thanks so much Kathy. But before I say yes:
I wouldn't be able to put them in the ground outside until April, but would I be able to put in in a pot inside, then put it outside when it gets warmer? (right now we have snow and single digit temps and night, low 20's during the day)

    Bookmark   March 3, 2006 at 5:31PM
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I remember as a young teen helping the man down the block (who ultimately became my father-in-law) trim a pussy willow tree. With the job finished, he took one of the six foot long wands with intermittent fuzzy buds and drove it into the soil to a depth of about 15 inches. There still grows a tree at that spot decades later although the current owner of that home does not tend it as my father-in-law would have when he was alive. Thanks for the memory.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2006 at 7:55AM
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lblack61(z5 NY)

I have fond memories of them too. Someone always brought them in to school for the teacher when I was in grade school. And then, the most thoughtful gift I ever recieved from a date (with a graduate student who was terribly poor as grad students usually are)was a bunch of pussywillows wrapped in light blue tissue paper.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2006 at 8:24AM
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webkat5(Z6a MO)

Yes, you can start cuttings indoors....just stick it down it in a pot of fine, moist soil in a sunny window...you will want to set the pot in a pan or bowl with deep sides as you will be watering often...don't let it dry out completely....doesn't have to stay "wet", though...

You can start them in water, but there is a different kind of root that is developed when in water than when in soil...so, since they will be going into soil, just start them there...

Whichever way you do it, you will want to make sure there are nodes below the surface.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2006 at 8:43AM
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knottyceltic(S/W Ontario 5b)

That's so true, you don't see Pussy Willow as much as when we were kids. When I was little I used to put Pussy Willow branches into large vases of water in my room and watch the roots grow like mad. I don't remember what my mother did with all the rooted branches but the water likely got too scummy and she threw them out. I would have had a forest of pussy willow if we had planted them all ;o)

PS... before Easter a lot of Nurseries and Florists have branches for sale for use in outdoor and indoor Easter arrangements. Just grab a few and root them either in damp soil or water as I did as a kid. It's MUCH quicker than growing from seed and you guarantee yourself a nice straight trunk.


    Bookmark   March 6, 2006 at 10:26AM
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lblack61(z5 NY)

I'm glad to know it's not just my imagination. They were everywhere when I was a kid and now I don't see them ANYWHERE.
I wonder if it is an environmental thing, a native plant that got crowded out by something else?
I'm taking Kathy up on her offer, so I'll use those to collect seed from and maybe WS them next year. In the meantime, I want to try to find out why it isn't prevalent here anymore.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2006 at 7:51PM
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tazdevyl1(z6 NJ)

My co-worker today brought me in 4 cuttings of her Pussy Willow. My gosh, they are HUGE. They are sitting in a vase right now, is this ok? I will prolly plant them out after the ground thaws.

On a side note, I had fun with my other co-worker, who is also a friend outside of work...I went up to him with the cuttings and asked him if he wanted to pet my (lets just say I left out the word willow.) (Yes, I can be VERY bad at times.) He just looked at me and laughed, and promptly said No thank you. LOL

    Bookmark   March 7, 2006 at 12:20AM
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They will sprout roots in a jar of water within 4-7 days. We use Pussy Willow and Curly Willow in my floral class. The instructor let us take a few left-over stems home. I just took a few of the Curly Willow stems home. Now I've got two thriving potted up plants in a sunny window....they LOVE the potting soil to be constantly wet. I chose this willow, because they can be container grown and trained to stay small via both root and top pruning. Can also plant directly in the ground (far away from water pipes) and can take severe pruning back to about 6 inches every year...they will bounce back extremely fast. I find the only reason someone would do that is if they are looking for young fresh twisted stems for crafts/floral design or a specimen/winter interest plant :)


    Bookmark   March 11, 2006 at 10:39AM
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We have a wild Pussy Willow on our property which I will have to move this year since it is declining every year. I think the spot where it seeded itself is just too dry.

I also have a Rubykins Pussy Willow which I truly enjoy. The 'pussies' are not as big as on the wild variety and have a reddish hue to them. The hummingbirds love to play in this willow, flying in and out as though they are playing tag!! I should see if there's any seeds to those pussies which came out in a warm spell in January this year...

    Bookmark   March 11, 2006 at 7:48PM
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A friend of mine has a weeping pussywillow, I wanted to take a piece of it to grow but it looks like it is grafted onto something else. Will the weeping pussywillow grow up and then weep on its own?


    Bookmark   March 13, 2006 at 2:42AM
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webkat5(Z6a MO)

Weeping is what I have from a cutting and it is weeping....

    Bookmark   March 14, 2006 at 11:02AM
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pitimpinai(z6 Chicago)

What is the growth habit of Rybykins? Two traders sent me some cuttings of this willow. They look diferent. I have Willow cuttings coming out of my ears, but hate to not trying to grow them. I am wondering where I am going to plant them all. :-P

    Bookmark   March 18, 2006 at 8:27AM
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tazdevyl1(z6 NJ)

Well some of my "fur" fell off. And as I was playing with the thing (I like to pet the things LOL) I noticed some black things in there. So I went on a search to see if they DO have seed...well here is a link I came across.


I will be planting the black thingies I found, just as an experiment.


    Bookmark   March 20, 2006 at 4:18AM
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webkat5(Z6a MO)

Pretty apparent (according to the link you provided) that you would need a male and a female of the species to produce seeds....

Seeds must be fairly small....

This is probably why most people start them via cuttings....

    Bookmark   March 20, 2006 at 8:48AM
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lblack61(z5 NY)

That's a great link! Thanks for sharing. The cuttings I recieved from Kathy started getting those pointy things on the catkin and I wondered what it was.
I'm looking forward to getting them in the ground. I have just the spot for them if they like wet feet!

    Bookmark   March 23, 2006 at 6:52PM
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scouttiegirl(z5 -ny)

I have some black pussy willows and was wondering if someone could tell me the best time to take cuttings. I would like to get some rooted for upcoming swaps. They already have catkins on them as they bloomed early from the freakish warm spells. Thanks~Heather

    Bookmark   March 27, 2006 at 3:05PM
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webkat5(Z6a MO)

You can take cuttings any time, really....are they budding?

Hardwood in the winter or soft wood in the spring.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2006 at 7:10PM
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will trade wild purple iris and daffodils for horny goat weed SEEDS>..for bone density.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2011 at 4:37PM
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