Salix spp. 'willow' discussion, tree bogs and also reintro to abdullah

Discussion in 'Planting, growing, nurturing Plants' started by abdullah, Apr 12, 2010.

  1. abdullah

    abdullah Junior Member

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    [reintro]

    hi all, i havent logged in for ages but still keeping an eye on things periodically, truth be known i forgot my password/didnt seem to work after the change to vbulletin, but strangely it does now, anyway this year ive got more dreams (to much sleeping last year i suspect) and in reality im doing a cert 4 in general horticulture and hoping to do a pdc towards the end of the year.

    ive learned a lot about plants so far and other aspects of conventional horticulture which is interesting and scary sometimes (eek at the chemical unit), also people throw around the word sustainable but ive noticed they drive the tractor a few dozen times over to get it, then suggest chem treatment, anyway back to the topic.

    [Salix and tree bogs]

    ok so im planning a tree bog into my plot (long story but so far it is the best option for sewage treatment for my situation) so ive read that Salix viminarus and purpurea commonly basketweavers willow and purple willow respectively are good options, for the reasons that they are heavy feeders and they produce long stems ideal for weaving, making stuff and fuel.

    now the issue is that Salix viminarus is a 'weed' aarrggh so the nurseries dont stock it, and ive honestly never seen one to take cuttings, it wouldn't become a weed at my place because i would cut it back every year to make stuff or use as fuel.

    i haven't ruled out other plants for my tree bog, ive read that various types of Calisteman (bottlebrush) could be suitable and they have benefits of looking nice and bringing birds but for me the willow is just more usable.

    so has anyone seen one around that i could take cuttings from, or have seeds?

    also has anyone got a tree bog and what have they planted in it as the main feeders?

    thanks all for taking the time to read.
     
  2. abdullah

    abdullah Junior Member

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    i understand that there maybe some reservation about supplying weeds.

    does anyone know where these plants are growing wild and possibly out of control so i can go and test my weed management strategies on them?
     
  3. geoff

    geoff Junior Member

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    Hi abdullah,

    I have an Italian tying willow which I sourced from Bob Magnus in Tasmania. From his description it seems to be similar to the basketweaver type willows you're looking for. It's only small at the moment so it would be hard pressed to offer enough wood for decent cuttings, so you could try Bob (https://www.woodbridgefruittrees.com.au/) or get back in touch in a year when it should have grown some.
     
  4. ecodharmamark

    ecodharmamark Junior Member

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    G'day Abdullah

    Great to see you back on the PRI Forum.

    For an in depth look at Willows, and how they can fit within the permaculture paradigm, may I suggest you take a look at Holmgren's extensive (practical and theoretical) work on the subject:

    Spring Creek Community Forest

    Cheerio, Marko.
     
  5. mischief

    mischief Senior Member

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    If you dont just want trees to help with this then you could look at things like NZ Flax.

    This used to be used downslope from spetic tanks and runoff as it is supposed to be a heavy feeder.

    Other plus points, the fibre takes ages to breakdown, can be used to make alot of things like mats, baskets, rope,cloth; depending on what type you get.

    They grow between 2 feet to 9-12 feet long, Will handle being swamped-(will grow in streams, ponds), completely dried out(when established) will handle salt spray and sandy soil.
    Bugs are mainly a leaf cutter from what I have seen and your chooks should not be allowed anywhere near them- they can dig a mature plant out as I found when I enclosed one in a chook pen.
    Also probably not a good idea to put them in or next to your vege garden as they are a great habitat for slugs and snails.

    Some have alot of fibre some not much and you can tell by running your finger nail across the grain of the leaves, the more ridges, the more fibre.

    And lastly because they curl up as they dry they are useful for catching or slowing down water runoff, in compost if cut into slices.

    The tall ones will also act as a wind break, they arent invasive like bamboo but can take awhile to establish if you are taking fan cuttings.

    They do need to be protected from livestock when young as they will be stripped otherwise.Cows seem to think they are licorice straps.

    The flower stalks make great kindling when fully dry and burn down to fine ash with no /little sparks.I used to use the green stalks of a really tall one as a garden stake for peas and beans but as they dryout they can break easily.
     
  6. void_genesis

    void_genesis Junior Member

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    Hi Geoff

    I would dearly love some tying willow if you have some spare. Let me know if there is anyway to make this happen.
     
  7. andrew curr

    andrew curr Moderator

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    flax is underated!
     
  8. andrew curr

    andrew curr Moderator

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    When is too late to plant willows??????????
    moisture is gr8 at he moment but the babylonica leaves are shooting!
    tormentosa and some others including popar are yet to shoot leaves
    or should i concentrate on chiselling up some ground for an overabundance of quercus?
     
  9. andrew curr

    andrew curr Moderator

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    Cows love it too!!!!
     
  10. matto

    matto Junior Member

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    Chisel anyways!

    Cam got us using a pipe layer next to the creek at Mulloon, so he could start a nursery of willow rootstock for his structures. Which I thought to be quite impressive!

    Doing better than here, babylonica is still waiting to burst its buds! Send rain!
     
  11. mischief

    mischief Senior Member

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    For those in NZ, I found the 'basket' willow at the Southernwoods Nursery in the South Island.
    They also have the Japanese fodder willow.

    My new plant arrived and I am hoping to eventually get enough stems to weave a canopy to go over the new seating area thats alongside the new and improved boundary fence we just put up.

    I had always put off getting this type of plant as the only willows I had seen had been huge trees,obviously had never been coppiced as we are going to do with them.
     
  12. heftzwecke

    heftzwecke Junior Member

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    It is very difficult to find plants banned as weeds. Apparently Ceylon Hill Gooseberry can stand water logging though mine died but from winter. You can't weave baskets but eat the fruits. And plums are said to stand some water logging too.
     

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