Salix repens

Tracheophyta MagnoliopsidaSalicaceaeSalixSalix repens


A variable shrub growing in a range of habitats. The prostrate var. argentea and var. repens are typically found on fixed dunes and especially dune-slacks, in maritime heaths and heathy grassland and on inland heaths and moorland. The erect var. fusca is found in fens. The species becomes more confined to moist or wet habitats in the south and east of its range. 0-855 m (Atholl, E. Perth).



World Distribution

Eurosiberian Boreo-temperate element.

© P. Shannon

Broad Habitats

Light (Ellenberg): 8

Moisture (Ellenberg): 7

Reaction (Ellenberg): 6

Nitrogen (Ellenberg): 3


Salt Tolerance (Ellenberg): 0

January Mean Temperature (Celsius): 3.5

July Mean Temperature (Celsius): 14

Annual Precipitation (mm): 1205

Life form information

Height (cm): 150

Perennation - primary


Life Form - primary




Clonality - primary

Rhizome far-creeping

Distribution information

Count of 10km squares in Great Britain: 1624

Count of 10km squares in Ireland: 459

Count of 10km squares in the Channel Isles: 3

Atlas Change Index: -0.42

Weighted Changed Factor: -9

Weighted Change Factor Confidence (90%)


Distribution information

JNCC Designations


PLANTATT - Attributes of British and Irish plants. (.zip 1455KB) This dataset was compiled and published in 2004, and last updated in November 2008. Download includes an Excel spreadsheet of the attributes, and a PDF explaining the background and nomenclature. Note that the PDF version is the booklet as published, whereas the Excel spreadsheet incorporates subsequent corrections. A hardcopy can be purchased from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology.

Atlas text references

Atlas (190c)
Trees and shrubs hardy in the British Isles, edn 8, IV. Ri-Z,
Bean, W. J.
, London, (1980)

Genetic components of morphological variation in Salix repens,
Fowler, N., Zasada J., and Harper J. L.
, New Phytologist, Volume 95, p.121-131, (1983)

Howitt, R. C. L., and Howitt B. M.
, A Guide to Some Difficult Plants, London, p.28-40, (1990)

Atlas of north European vascular plants north of the Tropic of Cancer. 3 vols,
Hultén, E., and Fries M.
, Königstein, (1986)

Jalas & Suominen (1976)
Willows and poplars of Great Britain and Ireland. Botanical Society of the British Isles Handbook no. 4,
Meikle, R. D.
, London, (1984)