01690 720214

Dwarf willow (Salix herbacea)

Mike Raine (July)

I posted Dwarf willow, also known as Least willow on this enviro diary a couple of years ago (May 2007) and this week passed by the same spot, near the summit of Y Garn, to see it again. I was surprised and confused to see it covered in what looked like red berries. So I put some work in to check my identification and remained confused!
Fortunately here at Plas y Brenin we have a good relationship with Dr. Barbara Jones, seed plant expert at CCW, she also a climber. I sent my photograph to Barbara and explained my confusion. Ha yes! She replied a problem she had observed people encounter before. The red 'berries' are actually the gall of a sawfly - an arctic species and in Britain its only host plant is Salix herbacea, so mystery solved. Barbara and her team have recently done some studies on the extent of Dwarf willow to ascertain its current status so it can be monitored, being confined to the highest summits of the Carneddau and the Glyderau it could easily suffer adverse affects with the onset of climate change.
So watch out for this miniature 'tree' and please, tread lightly

Got A Date Available - Need An Adventure To Match?

Find out what's going on at the National Mountain Sports Centre between any date range on this handy new search page

Latest News


Environment Symposium For Mountain LeadersThe 2017 Plas y Brenin Environment Symposium for Mountain Leaders and Mountaineering Instructors wil....


New Autumn Fast Track Instructor Scheme Option AddedWe've added another option to our Fast Track Instructor Scheme. Until now, the course has always run....


Fast Track Instructor Scheme<br/>Open DaysJoin us for a free information day on May 1st and find out how the Fast Track Instructor Scheme can ....


New Mountain Bike Courses LaunchedCheck out our new range of mountain bike courses designed to help you improve your skills fast.....


Equipment HireOur equipment stores is packed with carefully chosen, well maintained technical gear. Provided we ....

What's On In Our bar?

Our friendly and lively bar is open to the public. From talks and lectures to film nights and live music, there's always something going on. Find out what's coming up next here

Adventure Sport
Summer Camps (Age 12-17)

Summmer Camps For Young People Aged 12-17Young climbers, mountaineers, paddlers and mtb riders aged 12-17. Develop your outdoor skills with our top coaches on one of our residential summer camps.

Gift Vouchers

PYB Gift VouchersAvailable for any amount, our gift vouchers make the perfect present for any outdoor enthusiast.

Weather Forecast, Tides and Surf Conditions

Find out what the weather's doing in North Wales over the next five days.

Review your holiday or course here

Review Your Course
Help us by reviewing your holiday or course here

Adventure Map

Working alongside UCLan
to educate
outdoor professionals

University Of Central LancashireFind out how we are working with one of the country's top universities to develop lasting careers in the outdoors.