Pacific Willow (Salix lasiandra)

The Pacific Willow (Salix lasiandra) is a deciduous tree native to the western regions of North America, flourishing in riparian zones and wetlands. Characterized by its slender and graceful appearance, it can grow up to 40 feet tall, with long, narrow leaves that are dark green on top and pale green beneath. The bark is smooth and gray, often becoming fissured with age. During the spring, the tree produces yellow catkins, a significant source of nectar for pollinators.

Adapted to thrive in moist and saturated soils, the Pacific Willow plays a vital ecological role in stabilizing riverbanks and providing habitat for various wildlife. Its roots are known to spread extensively, helping in soil erosion control. The wood of the Pacific Willow is flexible and has been traditionally used by indigenous peoples for basket weaving and other crafts. Its medicinal properties, particularly in the bark, have also been recognized, making it an ecologically and culturally valuable species.

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