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Hybrid Willow or Hybrid Poplar?


I often get asked "which one should I choose Hybrid Poplar or Hybrid Willow"?

The growth habit of the hybrid poplars we sell tend to have a single "trunk" so they will look more like a tree when mature. Whereas hybrid willows tend to have multiple trunks and grow in more of a "bush" shape. Both get very tall when mature. If you need height (think a screen on a field edge where the road is well above the field) go with hybrid poplar. If thick mass at ground level is what you are after, hybrid willow is the winner.

Water requirements for both are the same. You CAN'T over water them. Both will take as much water as you can throw at them so long as they aren't submerged for extended periods of time. Both will struggle in a drought. The first 2 growing seasons are the most critical for water. After that it you would need a 100 year drought to kill them.

And as always, plant them through a ground cover of some type. Hybrids can handle plastic or fabric. Plastic is cheap but the sun eats it. Plan on adding some mulch over the plastic to keep the sun from destroying it. Fabric (you can find our X-Cell fabric here) will last a LONG time without anything on top of it. Our oldest fabric is approaching 10 years old and still looks great.