Willow or white willow (Salix alba L.)

Willow or white willow – a tree of the genus willow. Other names: White willow, white willow


A tree up to 25 m tall with a thick, straight and slender trunk, covered with dark gray cracked bark, and with a spreading crown. The branches are rod-shaped, long, silky when young, later glabrous, greenish, yellowish or reddish. Leaves with small early falling stipules, on short petioles, oblong-lanceolate, pointed, more or less rounded at the base, finely glandular-toothed along the edge, glabrous above, but not bright green, slightly silky below, greenish or silvery; young leaves are always silky white on both sides. Willow catkins bloom simultaneously with leaves 3-5 cm long; bracts are yellowish-greenish, falling off before fruit ripening. The fruit is a two-nested capsule, a seed with a crested fly. It blooms in April, bears fruit in May. Willow grows wildly in river valleys, along the banks of water bodies, often bred near housing, along the roads. Found everywhere.


In medicine, willow bark is used – Cortex Salicis. Harvested in May, June or July. At this time, the bark exfoliates well from the wood. Dry in attics or in well-ventilated areas.

Contains active substances:

The bark contains the glycoside salicin and tannins. Salicin in the body splits off salicylic acid and therefore has an antipyretic effect.

Medicinal use:

Willow is used in the form of a decoction as an antipyretic, for rheumatism and bedsores. For a similar purpose, goat willow bark (Salix caprea L.), brittle willow (Salix fragilis L.) and other types of willows are also used.

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