A medium-sized, fast-growing suckering tree with highly ornamental foliage. Native to western and southern Europe, it was introduced into Britain shortly after the last Ice Age. The large, almost maple-like leaves are covered in white down, which remains on the underside of the leaf throughout the season. The contrast between the dark upper leaves and the woolly-white underside creates a beautiful effect in even the slightest breeze.
Site and soil
The White Poplar does well on most soils, including chalk, and in wet areas. It is tolerant of coastal salt spray and winds.
Height and spread
Below are the approximate stages of growth, assuming sited in suitable conditions for this species;
After 10 years: 9m x 4m After 20 years: 15m x 7m
Leaf and bark
The leaves are large, to 10cm, and maple-like with five lobes. Young leaves are covered with a white hairy down, which gradually fades from the upper surface, but is retained on the underside throughout the season. The upper surface becomes dark green, turning yellow before leaf fall in autumn. Young shoots are covered with the same white down, which is gradually worn away as the season advances. The bark is smooth and white or grey, with darker diamond-shaped marks.
Flower, seed and fruit
The flowers are catkins borne in late winter and early spring. The White Poplar is dioecious, male and female catkins being borne on separate trees. Male catkins are red, females green, the latter producing masses of fluffy seeds which are dispersed by the wind in June. When bought in quantity there is a good chance both sexes will be represented.
Shelter belt; an attractive ornamental specimen tree for parks, large gardens and coastal areas.
The White Poplar supports a range of insects, butterflies and moths.
The main reasons for buying protection is to protect the plants against:
When it comes to deciding what protection to choose the golden rule is to choose the product dependent on which pest you are protecting against. The below will help you in deciding what height of protection you will need.
Vole, Mice 20cm
Roe Deer, Muntjac 1.20m
Fallow Deer 1.50m
Pest & Minimum Protection Height
Protection Type Where more than one size is listed, the wider diameter protection is recommended for taller, bushier plants.
Support Required Taller support is recommended for use in sandier, lighter soils and wider/stronger support should be used at exposed sites.