Desert Willow Tree

The scientific name for the Desert Willow Tree is Chilopsis Linearis. It is a large shrub or small tree.

It is a plant that belongs to the temperate climate zone. This is a flowering plant that is native to South-western United States and Mexico. These plants are generally found near the river banks at an elevation below 1800 m. The plant’s name uses Willow although it is in no way related to the Willow class of the plants, as it does not resemble it in shape. These are extremely beautiful plants that enhance the beauty of your garden area. With some knowledge about this plant, it can be well looked after.


Desert Willow Tree Facts and Description:

There are two ways to plant the tree, one is by planting a seed and the other is by buying a miniature plant from the nursery.

  1. As it is a shrub so its height can range from 15 to 26m and at maturity they can spread up to 10’.
  2. They have deciduous leaves that about 10 to 26 am long with a width of few millimetes. The leaf arrangement alternate and opposite.
  3. They can grow in the hardiness zone of 7-9.
  4. These are basically flowering plants planted for bright colours of flowers that they bear.
  5. These are multi-trunked tress with well-grown branches.
  6. The trees grow at medium rate about 13-24’’ per year.
  7. These trees are perennial in nature, that is they grown all around the year.

desert willow tree flower

Desert Willow Tree Guide and Tips 

Attributes of this tree are:

  1. It flowers in middle of the summer season and bear fragrant flowers. Their colour ranges from Pink, white, violet and purple.
  2. Their flowers bloom in the time between April, May, June, July, August, September. The heaviest bloom is between May and June.
  3. Its soil and sunlight conditions are perfect these tree won’t require much care or maintenance.
  4. These trees are fit for the extreme drought condition, so if your area receives more than 30 cm of rainfall then you meet one of the major requirement for having this tree in your garden.
  5. They have multiple trunks, and spreads in the surrounding areas.
  6. Because it has thick growth it is quite preferable for wide screens and tall hedges.
  7. The leaves are simple and linear and its color may blue-green, medium green or even dark green.
  8. They can produce to about 10’’ seed pods which are able to survive through the winter.
  9. They spread in round and horizontal shape.
  10. The flowers borne on Desert Willow Tree are bell-shaped that are hollow in the middle.
  11. These trees are extremely robust in nature as they are extremely tolerant not only towards the high-intensity heat conditions but also to the extreme cold-conditions as well.
  12. The white-winged moth is the larval host of the plant.


Care for Desert Willow Chilopsis

How to Care for a Desert Willow Tree

These trees require a lot of maintenance as they require at least 6 hours of direct sun light without any filtering. The soil condition also need to preferable for these trees to grow well and healthy, these trees grow in acidic, loamy, basic, well-drained and clay like soils. They will not be able to survive in the wet and heavy soil.

These trees are pest and infection free, but they will require occasional irrigation and pruning.Fertilizers and other organic matter should be added on regular intervals to ensure a healthy and beautiful looking plant.When the tree is growing make sure to regularly trim the dead leaves and dead twigs off the plant using a tool called loppers. Constantly, look for any tree diseases especially in winter season, although its not usual, but precaution must be taken.This tree does not require regular watering like other plants. To be specific, watering to the plants must be done once in a month during summers and once in six weeks during winters. As being a drought-area plant it cannot stand water logging.

If you wish to plant one more Desert Willow Tree, then just cut off a branch and place it in the soil and it will develop into a full-fledged plant. The full grown Desert Willow Tree should also be trimmed off so as to give enough space for the new leaves and flowers to blossom. The full grown Desert Willow Tree tends to bend, which does not look very impressive, moreover, the bent branches are vulnerable to get broken in case of strong winds. To avoid this, tie the bark of the tree to a strong rope that is enough to support the plant.


Uses for the Wild Life:

The seeds of the Desert Willow plant are eaten by the birds. They especially attract the hummingbirds. The trees provide an excellent nesting site for the birds on the tree branches and on the ground provides a good cover for other animals.

Desert Willow Tree Guide


  1. The branches of the Desert Willow tree are used to make the thatched roofs.
  2. Different parts of the plant are used to make different medicines for fungal infections like athlete’s foot.
  3. The woods of the plant have also been used for making baskets.
  4. The Roots of the Desert Willow Tree are strong enough to avoid the soil erosion in the area.
  5. In Mexico, the concoction of the Desert Willow Tree’s flower is used for cough and bronchitis problem.


Desert Willow Tree can be of great heights. If grown naturally then its growth can be irregular. It appearance can vary from round and willow like looks or can also be found in the form of horizontal and shrub types. The Desert Willow Tree is tolerant to unsuitable conditions also like height or extreme heat conditions. The tree also fits in if heat conditions go beyond tolerance level like droughts. The trees do not fit places who do not receive adequate sunlight.

The tree can be classified as dangerous as well advantageous as it can cause fungal infections and can prove itself to be medicinal as stated above. The trees are advantageous in other ways as well, as they do not require any sort of separate care like protecting it from pest. These are pest free. They require regular maintenance like, adding fertilizers can ensure a healthy growth. There are wide variety of goods which can be manufactured using its wood which can be of use in our daily lives.

Post Author: Garden Master

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