THE UK NATIONAL WILLOW COLLECTION
Rothamsted Research holds the National Willow Collection, one of the largest ensembles of Salix germplasm in the world.
Rothamsted Research is the home of the National Willow Collection. The National Willow Collection moved to Rothamsted Research in 2002. Today the National Willow Collection contains 1,500 accessions and over 100 pure species of Salix are represented. This unique germplasm resource has been used to underpin a bioenergy breeding programme and a number of other research programmes.
The collection was created in 1923 following the impact of the First World War on basket willow production. Basket willow was identified as a strategic resource in the First World War by a War Office committee which was set up after the armistice to review the war effort. The committee recommended appointing a National Willows Officer to provide scientific support to the basket willow industry. J.P. Hutchinson was appointed to this role at Long Ashton Research Station. He realised the value of securing basket willow varieties in a living collection and the National Willow Collection was initiated in spring 1923.
BASKET MAKING VARIETIES
To view our list of basket making varieties please see here. Cuttings are available annually if enquires are received by 20 December each year. This allows woody cuttings to be prepared for shipping in the late winter/spring. Cutting allocation will be on a first come first served basis with use for research taking priority. For more information contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
A comprehensive and practical guide for the small or large scale basket willow grower, produced jointly by the Basketmakers’ Asscocoation and Rothamstead Research is available here.