Elegant Willow
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Elegant Willow
ative Photo: Anil Thakur
Common name: Elegant Willow, Dwarf Willow • Hindi: bashal, bes, beuns, bhashal, chhoti bashroi
Botanical name: Salix denticulata    Family: Salicaceae (Willow family)
Synonyms: Salix elegans, Salix elegans var. himalensis, Salix himalensis

Elegant Willow is a small tree or shrub, with twigs pubescent becoming hairless, Leaft stalks are 2-6 mm long. Leaves are 2.5-6.5 x 1.2-2.4 cm, elliptic, oblong or ovate, margin toothed, tip blunt to pointed, bright green above, lighter on the lower side, velvety when young specially along midrib, becoming hairless. Catkins appear after the leaves. Male catkins are 2.5-7 x 0.4-0.7 cm, on short leafy shoots. Bracts are 0.8-1.6 x 0.4-0.8 mm, obovate, silky pubescent on both sides. Stamens are 2, filaments 2-3 mm, villous in the lower half, united in the lower half or free, solitary erect gland opposite the bract or sometimes 2 glands. Female catkin 3.5-11.5 x 0.6-0.7 cm, on leafy shoots, bracts as in the male catkin. Ovary and stigmas are stalkless, each stigma 2-lobed. Fruiting catkin 4-12 x 0.8-0.9 cm, not dense. Stipe 0.3-0.7 mm long; capsule 4-5 mm long, lanceolate, glabrous. Elegant Willow is found in in the Himalayas, from Afghanistan to Nepal and China. Flowering: April-May.

Identification credit: Anil Thakur Photographed in Shimla, Himachal Pradesh.

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