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A shrub up to 8 ft high, of loose habit, sparsely branched; twigs covered with a thick silky coat of hairs. Leaves arranged very closely on the branchlet (about four to the inch), ovate with a heart-shaped base, rather abruptly pointed, very finely, closely, and regularly toothed, many of the teeth glandular, especially at the base, 11⁄2 to 2 in. long, 3⁄4 to 11⁄4 in. wide, covered with long, whitish, silky hairs on both surfaces, not so thickly as on the twigs; stalk from 1⁄5 to 1⁄3 in. long. Stipules persistent, obliquely heart-shaped, glandular-toothed, 1⁄3 in. in diameter. The female plant only appears to be in cultivation; this has catkins 11⁄2 to 3 in. long, borne on short leafy shoots.
Native of N. America from Labrador to Wisconsin, south to Philadelphia and Illinois. It is one of the most distinct of cultivated willows, especially in the extreme downiness of the younger parts, in the broad, closely set leaves, and large persistent stipules.