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Willow trees, popularly known as weeping willow trees, are one of the most well-known trees for various reasons, from religious and folklore to their long, drooping branches. The willow tree is actually a deciduous tree native to China, but found throughout North America, Europe, and Asia.
J & S Tree Service is Chicagoland’s Top Rated Local® tree services company, offering commercial and residential tree trimming, tree pruning, and tree removal services. Experienced and dedicated, our team offers 24-hour emergency tree removal services and storm damage cleanup services. We love trees, and we do our best to take care of yours so they can stay healthy and strong for years to come. Below, we’ll go over some interesting facts about willow trees, a tree commonly found throughout the Chicago area. Contact us to learn more!
Fun Facts About Willow Trees
- There are actually more than 400 species of willow trees, most are found in the Northern Hemisphere.
- Willow trees can be trees or shrubs, with the colder the climate, the shorter the tree. Most willow trees, however, are fairly large trees, growing to be between 45 and 70 feet tall.
- Willow trees are best known for their very distinct branches and leaves that hang down. J & S Tree Service in Chicago notes that willow trees are among the first trees to grow leaves in the spring and among the last to lose their leaves come fall. Their leaves turn a gorgeous green/yellow color.
- Weeping willow trees produce catkins in the spring that contain the weeping willows flower. The flowers are either all male or all female, making the tree either a male or a female willow tree.
- The shade willow trees produce due to their weeping branches is one of the reasons they are much beloved. J & S Tree Service in Chicago notes that they can create their own oases within their branches and make a cocoon all your own. Napoleon Bonaparte loved weeping willow trees and often spent long afternoons there when he was exiled to St.Helena. He was buried under one when he died.
- Willow trees soak up a lot of moisture. For this reason, they have very well developed root systems that can cause problems with underground piping, clog sewers, and even destroy sidewalks.
- Weeping willow trees are one of the best trees to climb as a child due to the way their branches grow. Many a dream, play houses, and magic have taken place under willow trees.
- Although willow trees are one of the fastest growing plants, growing an average of 10 feet a year, they are also one of the shortest living for trees, living to only about 30 years.
Weeping willow trees are one of J & S Tree Services favorite trees. Weeping willows got their name from the fact that when rain falls from its branches, it looks like it is weeping.
USES OF WILLOW TREES
Willow trees have been used since almost the beginning of humanity by humans. Fishing nets have been found made from willows dating back to 8300 BC. It’s branches were made into baskets, fences, and even used in homes. Boats even incorporated the branches from willow trees. Today, the wood of willow trees are made into boxes, brooms, furniture, dolls, toys, and whistles. The bark of willow trees have been chewed for millenia, known to treat fever, inflammation, and pain. One compound from its bark is used to make aspirin.
WILLOW TREES AND RELIGION
Willow trees are used by the Jewish people in their Feast of Tabernacles. In places in China, willow branches are believed to ward off evil spirits In Japan, a willow tree harbors ghosts. In England, a willow tree stalks travelers. The willow tree is a feature in Hans Christian Anderson’s story “Under the Willow Tree.” Even Harry Potter has a “Whomping Willow” that guards the backdoor entrance to the Shrieking Shack.
CARE OF YOUR WEEPING WILLOW TREE
Weeping willow trees are beloved by many, and when full grown, can be the centerpiece of your landscaping needs. J & S Tree Service in Chicago offers us these tips for caring for your willow tree.
- Weeping willows do well in the full sun or partial sun. However, you don’t want the sun to be blocked by other trees or buildings so plant a weeping willow at least 30 feet from these.
- Because the branches of weeping willow trees are so thin, they break easily in the wind. You want to install a fence or windbreak if you live on the Plains or in a windy area.
- Any type of soil is fine with willows.
- Willow trees do need adequate amounts of water. They have a shallow but huge root system that you need to be aware of when planting. A willow tree can damage underground piping and quickly take over your yard.
- J & S Tree Service in Chicago notes that willows will need a lot of watering if you don’t live near a creek. Moist soil is what helps a willow tree to thrive.
You can fertilize a weeping willow tree, but a full-grown one won’t need it.
- Due to the length of the branches, your weeping willow tree will require tree pruning services by J & S Tree Service in Chicago. Tree pruning will keep the branches off the ground. You’ll also need to prune out any dead branches. Raking will be needed for the catkins in the spring and the fallen leaves in the fall.
- Aphids love the leaves of weeping willow trees, but usually don’t cause any damage. If you notice an abundance of aphids, you can invest in tree pruning services to remove the branches where they are most prevalent or you can spray the trees down.
- Some insects can spread disease to willows. Again, tree pruning services by J & S Tree Service in Chicago usually takes care of the problem by removing the damaged branches.
HOW J & S TREE SERVICES IN CHICAGO CARES FOR WILLOW TREES
Weeping willow trees form some of the best childhood memories for many. With their unique leaves and branches, willow trees are beautiful in residential and commercial landscaped yards and remain popular in the Chicago area.
J & S Tree Services notes that the health and longevity of your willow tree depends upon regular tree trimming services. Since willow trees do grow so fast, you’ll want to invest in our tree trimming services on an annual basis.
J & S Tree Service also offers commercial and residential stump removal services, as well as storm clean up, in Chicago. Our mission is to go above and beyond your expectations. We not only do the best tree trimming and tree pruning job when you partner with us, but we also put our entire hearts into your trees and shrubs. We are passionate about the care of your trees and shrubs, which is why we show them love whenever we can. Contact us today for all your residential or commercial tree needs!