*UPDATE* What Dog Walkers see…


Willow reinforcing a river bank.

The Willow is an amazing tree. It is fast growing, clings to our river banks, used in basket making, cricket bats and even biomass power stations. An old friend of humans wherever it is found.

When present on a river bank the willow helps prevent erosion by stabilising the bank soil with its roots. The Willow can take up large amounts of ground water, more than other trees; So much water that when freezing cold weather strikes you can hear the Willow cracking and crashing due to the copious water it holds.

Willow sticks rooting and budding to reinforce the river bank.

One of it’s amazing properties is that sticks of Willow can be simply pushed into the ground and they will root and grow as a full tree! Look closely at the photographs in this blog. You will see that there are green leaf buds forming on the Willow sticks pushed into the river bank.

I walk past this river bank at least two-three times a week. When photographed, these Willow sticks had only been in place for a few days and already green shoots are showing! No doubt that there is also roots growing into the bank soil too.

One of the coldest places I have worked was by the banks of the river Thames near Reading. I used to cycle to work, which started at 6am. I would leave home at 4:30am and in the winter this was the coldest part of the night. In the hour it took me to cycle in I could hear the loud renting explosions of the riverside Willows as they froze!

**** UPDATE ***

29th April 2021 – Just two weeks and here come the leaves!

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