209. Salix wallichiana Andersson, Kongl. Vetensk. Akad. Handl. 1850: 477. 1851.
皂柳 zao liu
Shrubs or trees. Branchlets russet, blackish brown, or greenish brown, at first pilose, glabrescent. Buds russet or chestnut colored, ovoid, glabrous, angled, apex acute, recurved. Stipules small, semicordate; petiole ca. 1 cm; leaf blade lanceolate, oblong-lanceolate, ovate-oblong, or narrowly elliptic, 4-8(-10) × 1-2.4(-3) cm, abaxially silky pubescent, densely tomentose, or glabrous, greenish to pruinose, reddish when young, adaxially with filamentous hairs at first, glabrescent, smooth, margin usually entire (serrulate on shoots), apex acute to acuminate; reticulate veins indistinct. Flowering precocious or coetaneous. Male catkin 1.5-2.5(-3) × 1-1.3(-1.5) cm, sessile, rarely pedunculate, with 2 or 3 leaflets at base; bracts brown to blackish brown, oblong or obovate, long white pubescent or abaxially sparsely pubescent, apex acute. Male flower: gland 1, ovate-rectangular; stamens 2; filaments 5-6 mm, slender, distinctly glabrous or downy at base; anthers yellow, ellipsoid, large. Female catkin cylindric, distally attenuate, 2.5-4 × 1-1.2 cm, to 12 × 1.5 cm in fruit; bracts brown to blackish brown, oblong, long pubescent, apex acute. Female flower: gland 1; ovary narrowly conical, 3-4 mm, pubescent, shortly stipitate; style short to conspicuous; stigma 2-4-lobed. Capsule to 9 mm, pilose, rarely subglabrous; stipe elongate, ca. as long as bracts; valves revolute. Fl. Apr-May, fr. May. 2n = 18.
Mountain slopes, margins of woods, riversides. SE Gansu, Guizhou, Hebei, Hubei, Hunan, Nei Mongol, S Qinghai, Shaanxi, Shanxi, Sichuan, Xizang, Yunnan, Zhejiang [Bhutan, India, Nepal]
This species hybridizes easily with Salix sinica. Together, they produce many hybrids, with intermediate states, overlapping in their distributions. A. K. Skvortsov indicates that there are many herbarium specimens labelled as S. wallichiana, but they require further study because that species is W Himalayan.