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Common Name: Himalayan Poplar
Populus ciliata is a deciduous tree that can grow up to 20.00 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine and source of materials..
E. Asia - W. Himalayas - Kashmir to Bhutan and Western China.
Mixed forests with oak, deodar and pine, 1200 - 3000 metres[
]. Secondary forests and by streams[
], usually on light soils[
An easily grown plant, it does well in a heavy cold damp soil[
]. Prefers a deep rich well-drained circumneutral soil, growing best in the south and east of Britain[
]. Growth is much less on wet soils, on poor acid soils and on thin dry soils[
]. It does not do well in exposed upland sites[
]. It dislikes shade and is intolerant of root or branch competition[
A fairly fast growing species, especially when it is young[
Poplars have very extensive and aggressive root systems that can invade and damage drainage systems. Especially when grown on clay soils, they should not be planted within 12 metres of buildings since the root system can damage the building's foundations by drying out the soil[
A dioecious species - both male and female forms must be grown if fruit and seed are required. Male trees are very scarce[
Hybridizes freely with other members of this genus[
The bark is a blood purifier and tonic stimulant[
]. A paste of the bark, mixed with the ash of cow dung, is used as a poultice to treat muscular swellings[
Although no specific mention has been seen for this species, the bark of most, if not all members of the genus contain salicin, a glycoside that probably decomposes into salicylic acid (aspirin) in the body[
]. The bark is therefore anodyne, anti-inflammatory and febrifuge. It is used especially in treating rheumatism and fevers, and also to relieve the pain of menstrual cramps[
The plant is traditionally grown in living fences in the northwestern Himalayas, where it helps to exclude livestock and other animals; mark out land boundaries; whilst also providing a range of medicinal and other uses[
An extract of the shoots can be used as a rooting hormone for all types of cuttings. It is extracted by soaking the chopped up shoots in cold water for a day[
Wood - soft, rather woolly in texture, without smell or taste, of low flammability, not durable, very resistant to abrasion. Used for planking, matches, water troughs etc[
]. Used for timber for construction and making furniture[
The wood is used for fuel[
Seed - must be sown as soon as it is ripe in spring[
]. Poplar seed has an extremely short period of viability and needs to be sown within a few days of ripening[
]. Surface sow or just lightly cover the seed in trays in a cold frame. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in the old frame. If sufficient growth is made, it might be possible to plant them out in late summer into their permanent positions, otherwise keep them in the cold frame until the following late spring and then plant them out. Most poplar species hybridize freely with each other, so the seed may not come true unless it is collected from the wild in areas with no other poplar species growing[
Cuttings of mature wood of the current season's growth, 20 - 40cm long, late autumn in a sheltered outdoor bed or direct into their permanent positions. Very easy.
Suckers in early spring[