Willow scrub is the highest altitude tree dominated vegetation in the UK. It is now restricted to rocky slopes and ledges which offer protection from grazing animals. The steep topography of the sites, late snow lie and cool summers mean that these areas are permanently wet. A wide variety of species associate with the willows creating luxuriant ledges of flowering herbs, amongst twisted willow branches, in the summer months. These rare Salix species are hosts for important birds and insects in Scotland.

RBGE has been involved in willow restoration projects in Scotland. Plants have been propagated from wild collected seeds and cuttings. These have been planted back into a number of sites and continue to be monitored.

27a. wrapping willows for planting out in field

Willows being wrapped prior to replanting in Scottish sites.

More information on montane scrub can be found here