The long, narrow leaves of common osier are dark green and glossy on the topside, with silvery felt-like hairs on the underside. It’s a bushy plant that’s ideal for beds and borders, reaching its full height in just a couple of years. Flowers are green and the yellow catkins appear in late winter to early spring. Female catkins develop fruit capsules which split open to release tiny seeds.
Estimate full grown height: 7 metres, growing an estimated 100cm each year.
Value to wildlife: Caterpillars of a number of moth species feed on the foliage, including the lackey, herald and red-tipped clearwing. The catkins provide an important source of early nectar and pollen for bees and other insects, and the branches make good nesting and roosting sites for birds.
Preferred soil type or environmental conditions: Often found in wet situations such as riversides. Common Osier doesn’t grow well in alkaline soils and prefers full sunlight.
UK sourced and grown: Every sapling that we provide is UK sourced and grown to minimise the risk of importing and spreading tree pests and diseases. Seeds are collected and stored in the UK, and they are all coded and batched so that we can track each individual tree.
Learn more about this species on our common oiser profile.