14. Salix excelsa S. G. Gmelin, Reise Russland. 3: 308. 1774; A.K. Skvortsov in Rech.f., Fl. Iran 65: 26. 1969; R.R. Stewart, Ann. Cat. Vasc. Pl. W. Pak. Kashm. 183. 1972; A.K. Skvortsov & Edmondson in P.H. Davis, Fl. Turk. 7: 706. 1982.
Salix fragilis auct. non L.: Boiss., Fl. Or. 4: 1184; Salix litwinowii Görz ex Nasarov in Kom., Fl. URSS. 5: 120. 708. 1936; S. euapiculata Nasarov in Kom. Fl. URSS. 5: 192. 713. 1936.
Tree up to 30 m tall. Young branches glabrous or sparsely hairy, becoming glabrous, brown or yellowish. Buds at first pubescent, becoming glabrous, ovate-lanceolate or ovate-triangular, c. 2.5 mm wide, backs slightly convex. Stipules lanceolate or subulate, deciduous. Petiole 2-4 mm long, glabrous; lamina initially whitish-silvery, becoming glabrate, broadly elliptic 5-8.5 cm long, 1.3-2 cm broad, narrowed towards the base, tip shortly acuminate, glandular serrate at the margin, glabrous or hairy near the midrib on both sides or hairy beneath. Bract scales for the most part wider than 1 mm, mostly hairy at the edge. Male catkin 3-4.5 cm long, 4-5 mm broad before anthesis, becoming c. 1 cm thick, borne on a stalk with 3-4 leafy bracts; rachis hairy. Perianth ovate, retuse. Stamens 2, hairy at the base, 5-7-(9) mm long, anther (0.7-) 0.8-0.9 mm, ovate, yellow. Inner gland oblong, 0.6-0.7 mm long, outer 1 mm long. Female catkin, 1.5-3 cm long, c. 0.5 cm broad, elongating to 5 cm in fruit; dense, coaetaneous, bud scales larger than in the male, obovate, obtusish, erose at apex, pubescent at base, glabrous on the back. Inner gland in pistillate flowers subquadrate, 0.6-0.7 mm long; the outer up to 1 mm long, often absent. Ovary ovoid-conical, c. 3 mm long, glabrous, subsessile. Capsule c. 5-7 mm long; fruiting pedicel 0.3-1.4 mm long, style 0.5-0.7 mm long, semibifid; stigmas 2-parted, c. 0.5-0.7 mm long, lobes curved.
Fl. Per.: March-May.
Type: Persia, Rasht, S.G. Gmelin (LE).
Distribution: Pakistan (N. Baluchistan, Gilgit, Kurram) Kashmir, (probably all introduced), Afghanistan, former Russia (Central Asia), China (Kashghar), Iran, Iraq, Turkey, Lebanon, Syria (A.K. Skvortsov l.c.).