Can you make baskets from willow tree branches?

Can you make baskets from willow tree branches?

Baskets can be made with any type of pliable reed, grass, vine or branch, but willow is a popular choice because it creates such a sturdy basket when it dries. Willow shoots shrink when they dry the first time. Lay them out to dry for several weeks before using.

Can weeping willow be used for baskets?

Can you use weeping willow that is found in many gardens? No. Many of the varieties are used across the world for weaving but the most common used for basketry and sculptures are Salix purpurea, Salix viminalis and Salix triandra.

How do you preserve a willow tree branch?

To preserve pussy willows, simply cut branches in spring when the catkins are fully opened. When you bring them inside, put them in an empty vase without water. In early or late February (depending on where you live) you can pick branches with catkins that haven’t fully opened yet and force them to open inside.

What kind of willow is used for baskets?

There are three willow tree species commonly grown as basket willow trees: Salix triandra, also known as almond willow or almond-leaved willow. Salix viminalis, often known as common willow. Salix purpurea, a popular willow known by a number of alternate names, including purple osier willow and blue arctic willow.

Which willow is best for basket weaving?

Black Maul is a very forgiving supple willow. You can do virtually anything with it! Dry it with the bark on and use as brown willow, boil it, steam it or strip it (to use as white willow). This willow is held in high regard by weavers and is one of the best types of willow to use in beginners basketry.

How do you preserve willow branches and leaves?

Hang the bundles in a cool, dry, dark spot to dry. Air circulation will allow the branches to dry out and not get moldy. This may take a few weeks, depending on the time of harvest, amount of sap in the wood and the humidity level. Dry large branches in a box or vase.

How long do willow branches take to dry?

The willow should be wrapped in a moistened cotton sheet and then loosely covered with plastic or a tarp. You will need to mellow your willow, wrapped in this moistened sheet, for two days. Check on it every day, moving the bundles around and airing them out so that mold doesn’t form on the bark.