Silky Fruit Willow
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Silky Fruit Willow
ative Photo: Thingnam Girija
Common name: Silky Fruit Willow • Ladakhi: Biyuns
Botanical name: Salix sericocarpa    Family: Salicaceae (Willow family)
Synonyms: Salix rehderiana var. lasiogyna

Silky Fruit Willow is a small tree with branchlets yellowish brown when young, becoming purplish brown or brown, velvety, becoming hairless. Leaf-stalk is 3-4 mm, hairy, leaves lanceshaped, 5-8 x 1.2-1.8 cm, grayish white below, green above, base narrow, margin toothed or entire, tip long-pointed. Male catkins are 1.5-3 cm, on stalks 0.8-1.5 cm, with 2 or 3 small leaves at the base. Bracts are ovate-oblong, hairless below, above hairy at base. Male flowers have stamens 2, distinct, about 4 times as long as bracts. Female catkin are 2-2.5 cm, 6-12 cm in fruit; bracts long ovate, both surfaces and margin hairy, 1/3-2/3 as long as ovary, tip blunt or rounded. Female flowers have adaxial gland linear-oblong or oblong. Capsules are ovoid conical, silky hairy, stipe 0.3-1 mm long. Silky Fruit Willow is found in valleys in Afghanistan, Kashmir, Nepal, and Pakistan, at altitudes of 2400-5100 m Flowering: May-June.

Identification credit: Tabish Photographed in Leh, Ladakh.
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