Working with Nature - ALLIGIN WILLOWS
CROFT7 - Working with Nature


  Croft7  grows
   Salix viminalis    willow 

   On a plot in the beautiful crofting village of                      Inveralligin.




Inveralligin,  Willow and Pick Your Own  plots

   Alligin Willows

  Willow from this site is  grown  for sale
  in cuttings from 12 to 36 inches long
  and these are available during the
  winter months when the willow is                                       dormant  November end of April.  
 Large rods for Bowers, Tunnels, Sculpture,  River  bank spiling  also supplied.
 Details on request.
 Orders taken October onwards in each year enquiries  welcome at anytime.
 Tel 01445 791365    email  
 Mobile   07710 542732

      Alligin Willows

   Salix Viminalis cost details

  Season   December 2017 - Early April 2018


      Planting Cuttings guide

Please send your request for information from Alligin Willows or your Order Detail
   Cheques payable to `Croft7 `please  10% discount  For                   collecting in person ( by prior arrangement only)

 Salix viminalis
Characteristics of  Salix viminalis

Remarkable for its fast growth. It is capable of producing long straight flexible rods from 10 - 15 feet each growing season from March to October, after coppicing or pollarding the previous winter.

Maximum height when left to grow : 28 - 30ft.

It is hardy, resisting exposed conditions, including salt-laden winds, pests and diseases.

It  will grow in most types of soil, provided it is not to dry.

It requires no fertiliser, unless the soil is very impoverished or acidic. Indeed through its root spread and leaf litter, it improves and opens the soil structure and creates nutrients encouraging the growth of other plants and affords them shelter.

It is cheap and easy to plant in quantity and establish from slips (cuttings) and responds vigorously to regular cropping, providing a sustainable resource for a wide variety of uses.


Autumn  Alligin Willow

 Some suggested uses for Salix viminalis willow rods and cuttings
Spring floral decoration    Abundant catkins in early spring provide nectar for insects, bees and other  insects when few other flowers have emerged.  Willows are therefore useful as
windbreaks or incorporated into orchard plantings.  Willow catkins can also make attractive additions to springtime floral arrangements with flowers like tulips and daffodils., or simply on their own in a decorative vase.


Waste Management     willows will break down and purify effluents such as slurry and sewerage. Transevaporation cells of willow dispel discharge which might otherwise contaminate watercourses. Similarly, willow will assist Storm-water Drainage, Soakaways and Land Reclamation.

Wood chips  A mulch for playgrounds, paths, animal bedding, soil conditioning, composting, weed
suppression, and also used as biomass fuel.

River Spiling  Longer willow rods can be used for river bank spiling, supporting river banks against
erosion creating binding effects with root systems.

Snow fences Rows of willow can form an effective barrier against drifting snow.  Equally in a hedge can help filter and suppress noise levels from traffic.  The annual harvest from managing the willow can provide Fodder for livestock.

Game Cover Willow glades shelter and protect game-bird feeding and release-pen areas. Also, Strategically-placed rows will lift bird in flight during a shoot, or provide concealment for guns.

Fuel for heat and energy in homes Willow cropped every 3-5 years will give logs several inches thick. Thinner sections of rod can be tied in bundles (faggots) and fed into ceramic and masonary stoves, from which 2 hours burn can give 24 hours stored heat,, suitable for sheds, greenhouses. Dried wood chip or whole logs are equally suitable for  a variety of wood burning stoves in the home.

Fuelwood planting

Fun with Willow  Living willow structures, garden furniture such as chairs can all be created using willow rods and cuttings


                                              Creating a Bower

                       Alligin Bower kit


      (11)  Spread wood bark chips from the centre of the Bower to the                         outer perimeter.

           (12)  Maintain regular watering till established.


                 Each year`s growth will need to be trimmed or woven in, during                late winter or early spring.
             Ties may need to be slackened or removed as rods thicken, or                      they may be constricted and die.   
             Cut out any dead  growth. Replace with fresh rods if appropriate.
                   Add to the structure at any time to improve or apply fresh ideas.
             A top dressing of fertiliser can be applied sparingly if felt                              appropriate.

    Les has created structures for many clients in the Highlands  examples of a bower and tunnels are planned  in 2016 at the    Inveralligin site .
  Banner support for Community Woodland Association at a woodland fai

  KIRKHILL                  community orchard and willow bower and tunnels.

  A workbook for simple basket weaving with willows,  other materials  can be used from hedgerow species, or hazels, dogwoods etc


           Alligin Willow        NEWS 


November 2017


  Willow Harvest    commencing  DECEMBER 2017  till end of MARCH -  early  April 2018


    Planned for creation at the Alligin Willow site this Winter\Spring 2018


     Question mark `MAZE`

     Willow  `boat sculpture`

      Living willow   Chairs and Table

     Willow Bender workshop

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                                     willow weave
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