E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia

Salix lucida Muhl.
shining willow (Pacific willow (var. lasiandra); whiplash willow (ssp. caudata))
Salicaceae (Willow family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants

© Jamie Fenneman  Email the photographer   (Photo ID #17037)

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Distribution of Salix lucida
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Species Information

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Dioecious shrubs or trees, 1-11 m tall, not colonial; branches erect, flexible at base; twigs brownish, smooth or sparsely to densely hairy.
Alternate, simple, narrowly elliptic to lance-shaped, 5-17 cm long, 1-3.5 cm wide, lower surface glaucous or not, long soft-hairy, hairs white and rust-coloured, upper surface shiny to highly glossy, smooth or becoming so, margins toothed, bases pointed to rounded, tips long and tail-like; leaf stalks with or without glandular dots at top; stipules leaflike.
Unisexual, lacking sepals and petals, borne in catkins which flower as leaves emerge, the catkins slender to stout, on leafy twigs; floral bracts pale, smooth or hairy, hairs wavy, female bracts deciduous; stamens 4-5; ovaries 1, smooth; styles 0.2-0.8 mm long.
Capsules which split open to release the seeds, each of which is surrounded by a tuft of hairs; stalks 0.8-4 mm long.
Two subspecies occur in BC:

1. Leaves glaucous beneath, stomata usually restricted to the lower surface................ ssp. lasiandra (Benth.) E. Murray

1. Leaves not glaucous beneath, stomata abundant on both surfaces................. ssp. caudata (Nutt.) E. Murrray

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia

USDA Species Characteristics

Flower Colour:
Blooming Period:
Fruit/Seed characteristics:
Colour: Brown
Present from Spring to Summer
Source:  The USDA

Habitat / Range

Wet to mesic riverbanks, floodplains, shores, thickets and clearings in the lowland, steppe and montane zones; common throughout BC (ssp. lasiandra) and SC BC (ssp. caudata); ssp. lasiandra - N to AK, YT and NT, E to SK and S to NM, AZ and CA, ssp. caudata - N to AK and NT, E to AB and S to CO, UT, NV and CA.

Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Ecological Framework for Salix lucida

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres) 1 492 1700
Slope Gradient (%) 0 2 45
Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]
14 189 360
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
2 5 8
Modal Nutrient Regime
Number of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class
All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in: BG(6), BWBS(6), CDF(4), CWH(63), ESSF(3), ICH(15), IDF(5), MS(3), SBS(33)


The climate type for this species, as reported in the: "British Columbia plant species codes and selected attributes. Version 6 Database" (Meidinger et al. 2008), is not evaluated, unknown or variable.

Synonyms and Alternate Names

Salix arguta var. hirtisquama (Andersson) Andersson
Salix lucida var. angustifolia (Andersson) Andersson
Salix lucida var. intonsa Fernald
Salix lucida var. latifolia (Andersson) Andersson
Salix lucida var. ovatifolia Andersson
Salix pentandra var. lucida (Muhl.) Kuntze

Taxonomic and Nomenclatural Links

Additional Photo Sources

General References