About the Black Willow - Salix nigra :
The Black Willow tree, Salix nigra, is a small (sometimes shrub like) to large, short-lived, deciduous tree. It is fast growing and may reach maturity within 30 years. Other names sometimes used are swamp willow, Goodding willow, southwestern black willow, Dudley willow, and sauz (Spanish). This tree usually obtains a height of about 50 feet. The massive trunks are generally leaning and are often divided. The bark is thick and deeply divided into furrows separating thick, scaly ridges.
This deciduous tree has a crown that is broad and open with stout branches. Black Willow trees have twigs that are slender and easily detached. Leaf blades are variable in size, the larger to 4.7 inches long. Black willow roots are shallow and laterally extensive making them an excellent choice for stream banks and wet locations.