Salix Integra ‘Flamingo Tree’ – Growing Guide

salix integra flamingo tree

The Salix Integra ‘Flamingo’, with its dappled pink, white, and green foliage, brings a unique splash of colour to any garden. Known as the Flamingo tree or Dappled Willow, it’s a small, ornamental tree that is as resilient as it is beautiful. Join us on a journey as we delve into the essentials of growing and caring for the Flamingo tree, and answering some of your frequently asked questions.

Salix Integra ‘Flamingo’: An Overview

The Salix Integra ‘Flamingo’ is a deciduous shrub or small tree native to eastern Asia. It’s appreciated for its colourful, variegated foliage that emerges bright pink in spring, eventually turning white and green. It’s a hardy plant that, with the right care, can add an enticing feature to your landscape.

Growing Guide: Cultivating the Flamingo Tree

Choosing Your Flamingo Tree

When purchasing your Flamingo tree, look for a healthy plant with vibrant, well-coloured leaves. The plant should be free from any signs of pests or disease.

Planting Your Flamingo Tree

Choose a sunny or partially shaded spot in your garden with well-drained soil. The Flamingo tree is tolerant of most soil types, making it a versatile addition to your garden.

Caring for Your Flamingo Tree

Prune your Flamingo tree in late winter or early spring to maintain its size and shape. Regular pruning encourages vibrant, colourful new growth.

Top Tips for a Thriving Flamingo Tree

Watering and Feeding

Water your Flamingo tree regularly, especially during dry spells. While it’s relatively drought-tolerant, it prefers consistently moist soil. Feed with a general-purpose fertiliser in early spring to promote healthy growth.


Mulch around the base of the tree in spring to conserve moisture, suppress weeds, and gradually improve soil quality.

When to Prune Salix Flamingo Tree

The optimal time for pruning your Salix Flamingo is in late winter or early spring before new growth begins. This timing allows you to remove any dead or damaged branches, which encourages new growth and the characteristic pink variegation. Pruning during dormancy minimises stress on the tree and reduces the risk of disease transmission.

It’s also the perfect time to shape the tree, as the lack of leaves provides a clear view of the branches, allowing for precise cuts. By following this seasonal pruning schedule, your Salix Flamingo will continue to be a breathtaking focal point in your garden year after year.

Salix Flamingo Tree in Winter

The Salix Flamingo tree is hardy and can withstand cold winters. It will lose its leaves and reveal stunning orange stems during the Winter months.

In very harsh conditions or if planted in a pot, consider moving the tree to a sheltered location or protect it with a horticultural fleece.

If you’re concerned about your tree surviving Winter, then read our full guide on Salix Flamingo tree Winter protection.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Flamingo Tree

1. Why is my Flamingo tree losing its pink colour?

The pink colour is most vibrant on new growth in the spring. Regular pruning encourages the growth of new shoots that exhibit this delightful colour.

2. How big does a Flamingo tree grow?

If left unpruned, the Flamingo tree can grow up to 2.5 metres tall. However, its size can be easily managed with regular pruning.

3. Is the Flamingo tree suitable for a small garden?

Absolutely! With its manageable size and beautiful, colourful foliage, the Flamingo tree is a wonderful addition to a small garden or even a patio pot.


The Salix Integra ‘Flamingo’ is a delightful, low-maintenance tree that adds a year-round spectacle of colour to your garden. From its fresh, pink spring growth to the autumnal drop of its leaves, it’s a tree that never stops bringing joy.

Remember that gardening is an exercise in patience and continual learning. Even the most seasoned gardeners face challenges and enjoy triumphs. Your efforts with the Flamingo tree will not only reward you with a beautiful garden feature but also a deeper understanding and connection with the natural world.