It’s a dioecious tree (divided in male and
female individual flowers) with caducous leaves that grows as tall as 20 m. Branches are alternate
with a grayish-green bark, somewhat yellowish easily detached. They are
fragile. Leaves are opposite of 10 to 15 cm length by 2-3 cm wide. They have a short,
light yellowish-green peduncle of 0.7 to 1 cm. Green
leaves are glossy above and light green and opaque beneath due to the presence
of soft hairs. Edges are serrate and glandular. New leaves are oval-shaped and
gradually turn into lanceolate. There are female and male willow tree, which
are only different from each other by the flowers. The flowers are in erect
catkins; the male ones have yellow tall stamens and the female ones are green.
Male flowers have two stamens and two nectaries. Female flowers have one
nectary and a two-carpels gynoecium of a glabrous ovary with two stigmas. The
inflorescence is coetaneous in female flowers, (it is, they grow at the same
time as the leaves, not before them, as it is in other willow species). Rachis is green, pubescent with short and clear hair. It’s flaky in light green and
scarcely pubescent of 0.3 cm
long with a flatten nectary that wraps half the base of the ovary in a clear
yellowish-green color. The flower is approximately 0.35 cm long. Fruits are
glabrous capsules and seeds have a cottony whitish crest. Their parachute-like
shape allows them to travel long distances in the wind. The fruit is formed
from the female catkins. It belongs to the Salicaceae family.
It is original from Europe, except from the
northern end, western Asia and barely some parts of Northern
Africa. It grows in stream banks, roadsides, and shaded moist
areas near rivers. It succeeds in most soils, including wet, ill-drained or
intermittently flooded soils, especially for the roots. It blooms in spring
(March and April). Seeds are dispersed by the wind in May.
The stems and the trunk bark; although the leaves
and catkins are also used in folk medicine. The bark is obtained from
branches older than three years and not before mid-autumn, when the first
leaves have dropped. Leaves and catkins may be harvested during summer, before
fruits are formed.
> Acute and chronic rheumatism, myalgia,
symptomatic lumbar pain relief.
> Flu and common cold.
> Headaches, neuralgia and migraine.
> Dysmenorrhea or algomenorrhea, amenorrhea,
> Genital erethism: anaphrodisiac.
> Insomnia: neurasthenia.
> Arteriosclerosis, thromboembolism prevention.
> Wounds, trophic ulcers.
> Uterine spasms.
> Anxiety: insomnia.
> Increased sexual appetite.
> Painful menstrual periods.
> Vaginism: painful sexual intercourse.