How to Root a Weeping Willow


The weeping willow, known scientifically as Salix Babylonica, is often planted as a decorative yard tree. It grows quite rapidly, reaching a height of between 30 and 50 feet, and its fast growth and beauty of its hanging branches make it a popular pick with landscapers. If you are enjoying the beauty of a weeping willow, you can easily grow another one by rooting a branch of the one you enjoy. Once you have permission to obtain a branch cutting from the tree, rooting a weeping willow is almost as simple as sticking the branch in the ground.

Step 1

Remove a branch from a healthy weeping willow that is up to 6 feet long, and 1 to 2 inches wide at the point where you will be cutting it. You'll need heavy pruning clippers or a hand saw to cut the branch.

Step 2

Set the end of the branch in a bucket of water until your site is ready.

Step 3

Dig a square hole 18 inches deep and 18 inches wide. If you wish, add a bag of compost to the soil at this point.

Step 4

Pour 2 inches of water in the hole, and let it drain.

Step 5

Set your weeping willow branch cutting into the hole, and fill the hole in with the dirt. Tap the dirt down firmly around the branch to help make sure it will not be blown over by wind. If you are still unsure that it will withstand wind, stake the branch.

Step 6

Water your weeping willow cutting every other day, or daily in dry spells. Weeping willows thrive in moist soil, but not in soil that is waterlogged, and the additional moisture helps the roots develop. Planting the branch in the dirt and making sure it is moist is all you need to do to root your tree.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not plant weeping willows near houses or water pipes, as the root systems grow quite large and can damage structures.

Things You'll Need

  • Large pruning shears or hand saw
  • Bucket of water
  • Shovel
  • Bag of compost (optional)


  • JPR Environmental: Weepiing Willow Planting & Maintenance
  • Willows Nursery: Weeping Willow Cuttings: Living Willow Cuttings and Whips: How to Grow Them
Keywords: rooting weeping willow, propagating weeping willow, growing weeping willow

About this Author

A freelance writer for more than 12 years, Traci Vandermark has written extensively on health and fitness topics. She is a student of health, fitness and nutrition at the International Institute Of Holistic Healing, certified by the American Association of Nutritional Consultants. Her articles have appeared in Catskill Country Magazine, The Lookout Magazine, Capper's, Birds and Blooms and Country Discoveries, to name a few.