Trees with Buds Alternate

6. Buds protected by a single leaf scale Willows (Salix spp.)

6. More than one leaf scale. Go to 7

Willows (Salix spp.) There are numerous species of Willow in Ireland and many hybridise with each other. It is often complicated identifying the species of willow. In winter, some have hairy stems, others have smooth stems, but it is the single bud scale that is the distinguishing feature. Look carefully!!                               

The hairy stem of Grey Willow, Salix cinerea

A smooth stemed willow

7.  Buds on stalks not joined to main stem (see below). Go to 8. Alders (Alnus spp.)

7. Buds not on stalks. Go to 9.

8. Shoot hairy, often grey in colour. Grey Alder (Alnus incana)

8. Shoot smooth, purple. Common Alder (Alnus glutinosa)

8. Shoot smooth, purple but speckled. Cones often large. Italian Alder (Alnus cordata)

Common Alder (Alnus glutinosa)                              

Back to start of key                 Back to 5

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