|Common Osier (Salix viminalis). The Common Osier is a species of Willow. It is a large, fast-growing waterside shrub with an
upright growth habit reaching between 3-6m (rarely up to 10m).|
The Osier has long, slender leaves with untoothed margins that open following the appearance of catkins in the spring.
|The flowers are dioecious, with male and female catkins on separate plants. The male catkins are yellow and oval-shaped; the female catkins are longer and more cylindrical. They mature in early summer when the fruit capsules split open to release the numerous minute seeds.|
|Along with other related willows, the flexible twigs (called "withies") are commonly used in basketry, giving rise to its alternative common name of "basket willow".|