If you're looking for a unique tree to add to your landscape, a weeping willow may be near the top of your list. After all, its long tendrils make quite the spectacle as they blow in the breeze, and the shade it creates is lovely for summer picnics. But there are both pros and cons to planting a weeping willow tree, each of which you should consider carefully before you add this tree to your yard.
Pro: Weeping willows grow quite quickly.
Weeping willows are considered a fast-growing tree. They can add several feet of height per year, which means you'll have a fully grown, mature tree sooner than if you were to plant a more slowly growing species like an oak or maple tree. You'll still have to be patient and wait for your willow to grow, however.
Pro: Weeping willows can be shaped based on your needs.
As the tree grows, you can have a tree care service come prune it once a year. They can specially shape the tree so its long strands only fall in certain areas. This lets you keep certain areas of your yard unshaded while directing the shade to other areas. You can also minimize the mess over a driveway or concrete patio by having the tree trimmed to lean away from these features.
Con: Willows often attract insects.
There are many species of insects that are attracted to weeping willow trees. Many moths lay their eggs on the trees, and they develop into caterpillars. Willow bark beetles are also a concern, and they can even cause the tree to suffer if they show up in large numbers. If you hate insects, a willow may not be right for you -- or you may have to have a tree care company come spray it with insecticides each year.
Con: The tendrils can make a mess.
Even when you have the tree trimmed regularly, the tendrils can make quite a mess. Portions break off quite regularly and end up in your yard. So, if you like a perfectly groomed landscape, this may make a lot of extra work for you.
Weeping willows look unique and beautiful, but they're not right for everyone. If you're not bothered by some insects and tendril remnants in your yard, you can surely enjoy their shade, their fast growth, and their ability to be shaped. Talk to a tree care company like Show Me Tree Service in your area to learn more.