Autumn willow is a Native deciduous shrub growing about 3 to 8 feet in height. It occurs across North America in thickets, meadows, riverbanks, and calcareous sites; often in swamps with cedar and tamarack or in grasslands.
Leaves are leathery, elliptic to lance-shaped with long, tapering tips and fine serrations. Their colour is somewhat shinny, yellow green to dark green above, lighter and duller underneath. Twigs are erect, multi-stemmed, often forming a clump. The bark is shinny red-brown on young twigs, golden on older branches and grey on the oldest wood.
Stout catkins appear after leaves in June, with female trees eventually producing seeds surrounded by hairy tufts. Autumn willow closely resembles Salix lucida.
Autumn Willow — Salix serissima. Montana Field Guide. Montana Natural Heritage Program. Retrieved on October 24, 2020, from http://FieldGuide.mt.gov/speciesDetail.aspx?elcode=PDSAL022P0
Klinkenberg, Brian. (Editor) 2020. Salix serissima (L.H. Bailey) Fernald. E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Plants of British Columbia [eflora.bc.ca]. Lab for Advanced Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, Vancouver. [Accessed: 2020-10-24 4:05:46 PM ]
MICHIGAN FLORA ONLINE. A. A. Reznicek, E. G. Voss, & B. S. Walters. February 2011. University of Michigan. Web. October 24, 2020. https://michiganflora.net/species.aspx?id=2642
Natural Resource Conservation Service. (n.d.). Salix serissima (L.H. Bailey) Fernald autumn willow. Retrieved from https://plants.usda.gov/core/profile?symbol=SASE2