There are many plants which I see growing in other gardens, and think “That’s cool.” Salix integra ‘Flamingo’ is one such plant. June’s cooler temperatures and rain seem to have energized this plant and they look spectacular right now. There are few, if any plants, that have such a vivid combination of pink, white and green foliage nearly every day of the growing season. Flamingo Willow is what we call in the plant world an “exclamation point” in the garden, although its rounded shape makes it more of an emphatic comma!
Nuts and Bolts
Being a member of the salix family it grows rapidly, especially in the average to moist soils that it prefers. It can reach heights of five to seven feet tall and wide if left unpruned. You want to prune this plant however, because it’s the new growth that throws out that brilliant pink colour. The harder you prune; the more pink foliage. A sharp pair of hedge shears is ideal for this job. Best colour is achieved in full sun but dappled light would be sufficient too. Flamingo Willow is hardy to about -30 deg. C.
Plant it with
This is a terrific accent or specimen plant for the landscape as it immediately catches your eye. If you have a pond or other water feature site Flamingo Willow next to it. They look great in containers, particularly in those of solid black or grey. Their natural arching branches would lend themselves well to planting as an understory shrub amongst larger trees. Perennials with blue blooms; perennial geraniums, salvia, nepeta or delphiniums would make good dance partners as well.

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