Terms of flowering honey plants in the USA and Canada

According to observations of naturalists and beekeepers.

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Scientific name:

Salix discolor

Life form:

Shrub-tree.

Flowering time:

no data.

Flowering period

in British Columbia for this plant is: AprilMay.

NECTAR PRODUCTION: 
No data
 
SOURCE FOR HONEY BEES:
Minor

General distribution:

Pussy willow is common throughout the southern half of Canada and the north-central and northeastern portions of the United States. The westernmost and southernmost distribution of pussy willow in the United States is not entirely clear. There is general agreement that pussy willow occurs from Montana and Wyoming east through Illinois, Kentucky, and West Virginia.

Map of distribution and habitat in Canada

This plant is present in at least 41 states/provinces in this country.

See The Map

Botanical description:

Pussy willow is highly variable in its identifying characteristics. Typically it grows as a shrub or small tree to heights of up to 30 feet (8 m). Willows, in general, grow rapidly and produce extensive root systems. Pussy willow trunks may be single or clustered with stout ascending branches and branchlets. A large trunk circumference of 61.8 inches (157 cm) was reported for a North American pussy willow. The bark is slightly fissured and ridged. First-year pussy willow twigs are hairy but become glabrous with age. Twigs are flexible and average of 1.5 mm in diameter. Large buds (up to 1 cm long) are present and conspicuous along the stems.

Pussy willow leaves are deciduous, simple, and alternate. Leaf shape varies from oblong to elliptic, and blades are typically 2 to 5 times as long as they are wide. Blade length varies from 1.2 to 5.1 inches (3-13 cm), and petioles measure 0.2 to 0.8 inch (5-20 mm) long. Leaf margins are typically toothed, but the pattern is inconsistent. Flowers occur in dense catkins. Catkin buds are covered in dense silky hairs and are the best-known pussy willow feature. Mature fruiting female catkins are typically 1 to 4.7 inches (2.5-12 cm) long, while mature fruiting male catkins measure 0.6 to 2 inches (1.5-5 cm) long. Historic reports from an early beekeeper indicated that a single staminate pussy willow catkin contained 270 individual flowers and a pistillate catkin had 142 flowers. Neither the age nor location of the catkin-providing shrub was reported. Pussy willow produces long-necked capsule fruits that measure 0.2 to 0.5 inch (5-13 mm) long. Seeds are small (1.2-1.6 mm long and 0.5 mm in diameter) and have rings of short, stiff and long, silky hairs at the base.

Seasonal development:

Pussy willow flowers in early spring (March-May), and flowers appear before the leaves.


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List of honey plants that may be blooming now in British Columbia
See the entire list

Acer negundo (aka: Boxelder, Western boxelder, Arizona boxelder, California boxelder, Texas boxelder, Interior boxelder, Violet boxelder)

Pyrus communis (aka: European pear, Common pear)

Acer glabrum (aka: Rocky Mountain maple, Douglas maple, Greene's maple, New Mexico maple, Torrey maple)

Salix lucida (aka: Shining willow, Greenleaf willow, Tail-leaf willow, Whiplash willow, Pacific willow, Lance-leaf willow, Longleaf willow, Red willow, Western shining willow)

Rubus spectabilis (aka: Salmonberry)

Salix discolor (aka: Pussy willow, American pussy willow, Glaucous willow, Large pussy willow)

Salix exigua (aka: Narrowleaf willow, Coyote willow)

Prunus cerasus (aka: Sour cherry, Tart cherry, Dwarf cherry, Montmorency cherry)

Crataegus douglasii (aka: Black hawthorn, Douglas hawthorn, River hawthorn, Western thornapple)

Populus tremuloides (aka: Quaking aspen, Trembling aspen, Aspen, American aspen, Mountain aspen, Golden aspen, Trembling poplar, White poplar, Popple, Alamo Blanco)

Salix scouleriana (aka: Scouler's willow, Upland willow)

Acer circinatum (aka: Vine maple)

Prunus emarginata (aka: Bitter cherry)

Malus fusca (aka: Oregon crab, Oregon crab apple, Pacific crab apple, Western crab apple)

Salix arbusculoides (aka: Littletree willow)

Salix bebbiana (aka: Bebb willow, Beak willow, Beaked willow, Long-beaked willow, Diamond willow, Chaton, Petit Minou, Smooth Bebb willow)

Malus domestica (aka: Pyrus pumila, Malus pumila, Apple)

Acer macrophyllum (aka: Bigleaf maple, Big-leaf maple, Oregon maple)

Acer platanoides (aka: Norway maple)

Rubus ursinus (aka: California blackberry, California dewberry, California grapeleaf dewberry, Douglasberry, Pacific blackberry)

Salix drummondiana (aka: Drummond's willow, Beautiful willow, Blue willow)

Salix amygdaloides (aka: Peachleaf willow, Peach leaf willow)

Salix boothii (aka: Booth's willow)

Robinia pseudoacacia (aka: Black locust, False acacia, Yellow locust, White locust, Green locust, Post locust, Falsa acacia, Robinia)

Salix lemmonii (aka: Lemmon's willow, Lemmon willow)

Salix planifolia (aka: Diamondleaf willow, Planeleaf willow)

Salix pulchra (aka: Tealeaf willow, Flatleaf willow, Flat-leaved willow, Paneleaf willow, Thin red willow)

Ajuga reptans (aka: Bugle, Blue bugle, Bugleherb, Bugleweed, Carpetweed, Carpet bugleweed, Common bugle, St. Lawrence plant)

Astragalus (aka: Milkvetch, Locoweed, Goat's-thorn)

Rubus laciniatus (aka: Cutleaf blackberry, Evergreen blackberry, Slashed blackberry)

Salix alaxensis (aka: Feltleaf willow, Alaska willow)

Salix geyeriana (aka: Geyer willow, Silver willow)

Rhus glabra (aka: Smooth sumac, Common sumac, Rocky Mountain sumac, Red sumac, Western sumac, White sumac)

Salix richardsonii (aka: Richardson's willow, Woolly willow)

Allium schoenoprasum (aka: Chives)

Brassica napus (aka: Rapeseed)

Sinapis arvensis (aka: Charlock mustard, California rape, Charlock, Corn mustard, Canola, Kaber mustard, Rapeseed mustard)

Prunus pensylvanica (aka: Pin cherry, Fire cherry, Bird cherry)

Calendula officinalis (aka: Marigold, Calendula, Pot marigold, English marigold)

Prunus virginiana (aka: Chokecherry, Western chokecherry, Common chokecherry, Black chokecherry)

Prunus serotina (aka: Black cherry, Wild black cherry, Rum cherry, Mountain black cherry, Wild cherry)