Osier - Salix viminalis


A shrub or small tree to 5 metres. Shoots long and flexible, shiny and yellow brown when mature. Leaves long and narrow, untoothed, green above, silvery and shiny beneath, the edges turned down slightly. Catkins narrow, 1.5 to 3cm appearing before the leaves and crowded at the shoot tips.

Identification difficulty

Water margins and wet places.

When to see it

March and April.

Life History


UK Status

Quite common throughout lowland Britain.

VC55 Status

Fairly common in Leicestershire and Rutland. In the 1979 Flora survey of Leicestershire it was found in 193 of the 617 tetrads.

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map