San Diego Natural History Museum--Your Nature ConnectionSDNHM Field Guide
Willow (Salix lasiolepis) Salix lasiolepis

SALICACEAE (Willow Family)


There are many species of "Salix" or "Willow". The Arroyo Willow has clustered stems and grows as a thicket shrub or a small tree. The leaves of the Arroyo Willow are narrow in a reverse lance shape. They are dark green in color and smooth on the top and a whitish color with fuzz on the bottom. The twigs are yellow to brown and bear soft fuzz. The flowers are called catkins and have black or brown scales with dense, long, white hairs. They bloom in early spring before or with leaves. The fruit measures 1/4" long is light reddish-brown, it contains hairless capsules. They mature in late spring

Range and Habitat

The Arroyo Willow is found in wet soils along streams and arroyos, or gullies, in valleys, foothills, and mountains. It can be found in Washington, Idaho, and south to Southern California and New Mexico.

Text by Connie Gatlin
Photo credit: Liz Paegel

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