Explore Plants

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 

Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

rate this answer
1 rating

Wednesday - June 11, 2008

From: Ada, OH
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Aging non-native weeping willow in Ohio
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

We had a weeping willow now for about 15 years and it was doing fine until this summer. It has new branches sort of but a lot of the older ones are dying. There are leaves of course and they are still budding but it looks rather bare. What could be the problem?

ANSWER:

According to our research you are lucky your tree has lived that long. It grows very fast, has brittle limbs, and dies fairly young. This subject has come up several times this year, and we would like to refer you to a Mr. Smarty Plants previous question that we think will cover your situation, also. Please note that question was from Georgia, and that the willow is not considered invasive in Ohio, either. However, this USDA Plant profile of Salix x sepulcralis doesn't show it even growing in Ohio, so that's probably why it's not invasive. It would indicate that the temperatures are not good in Ohio for the weeping willow so, again, you are probably fortunate it lived this long.

Perhaps you would be willing to consider a native tree that might serve as a replacement for your weeping willow. We went to Recommended Species, clicked on Ohio on the map, and narrowed our search by clicking on tree for habit, perennial for duration. You can use the same method to make your own selection of trees or shrubs, and then go to our native plant suppliers site, type in your town and state in the Enter Search Location box, and you will get a list of native plant nurseries, seed companies and landscape professionals in your area.

Carpinus caroliniana (American hornbeam)

Carya ovata (shagbark hickory)

Hamamelis virginiana (American witchhazel)

Ilex opaca (American holly)

 

More Non-Natives Questions

Distinguishing non-native Wisteria from Austin
June 25, 2012 - How do I distinguish a native wisteria from a non-native wisteria?
view the full question and answer

Pruning of non-native weigela and roses
June 29, 2009 - I have a Red Prince wiegala (spelling?) and while most of the branches have leaves and red flowers, there are some branches that never produced any leaves or flowers. Should I prune them? If so, can...
view the full question and answer

Edibility of non-native garlic sprouts from Brancburg, NJ
March 12, 2013 - I have regular garlic in my refrigerator. It had sprouts growing out of it so I put it in a cup of water. Now that the stems are large enough to put in food, my question is.. Is that part of the garl...
view the full question and answer

Replanting of non-native Christmas Palm from Sarasota FL
November 28, 2012 - Do you know of a proven technique to plant a Christmas Palm in a built-in concrete pool deck planter box - using gravel around the soil root ball to delay the root bound condition we just ripped out?
view the full question and answer

Deterioration of non-native weeping willows in Alabama
May 19, 2008 - I have a small lake behind my house. 8 years ago we planted two nice weeping willow trees, one on each corner of our yard down toward the lake. One started looking bad last year and we cut all the de...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.