Bluestem Nurseryhardy field grown plants

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Salix (Willow) Stems at Bluestem Nursery

Salix (Willow)

Salix matsudana 'Golden Curls'

Corkscrew Willow
Salix matsudana 'Golden Curls'
Formerly: Salix babylonica var. pekinensis
Curly Willow, Corkscrew Willow, Peking Willow

Salix matsudana 'Golden Curls' - Curly, Corkscrew, Peking willow

Formerly: Salix babylonica var. pekinensis

There are many varieties of the larger Peking willow. However, this is a smaller clone preferred by the Japanese for flower arrangements, where it is used both fresh and dried. In colder climates, it is not as prone to die back, thus preserving the twisted golden branches.

Highly ornamental and non-invasive, Salix Golden Curls can be used in smaller areas. Nonetheless, one would wise to keep it well away from septic fields, which is the case with any tree.

S. matsudana 'Tortuosa, (S. babylonica var. pekinensis) will grow to a height of 15 - 20' in just 3 to 4 seasons, then slow down and fill out, eventually reaching around 30' after 8 to 10 years.

Suitable for seaside conditions.

There are two ways to grow this plant - pruned or left to grow to its natural form. Read our page about pruning willows to find out more about coppicing and the resulting different plant form with an emphasis on colorful stems for winter interest.

Description: small tree; 6-9 m (20-30'); contorted reddish-gold new growth; outstanding ornamental throughout the year

Conditions: full sun to part shade; thrives in poor soil; drought tolerant; prune for desired effect.

Coldest zone: 4 (find your zone; further info on plant hardiness)


The snow picture was taken in October and is of a group of two year old plants that are coppiced in the late winter every year.

Comparison of willow stems and leaves

Lists of various willow uses