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Willow & Poplar Poles

We aim to provide a reliable source of high quality poles for soil conservation purposes within the Hawke’s Bay Region.

The Regional Council has a selection of poplar and willow poles for sale each year. These poles have been bred especially for farm planting and their uses include:

erosion control
• shelter belts
• livestock shade
• drought fodder
• timber (poplars)

Placing your order

Orders for the 2021 pole planting season are now closed.  Please note that 3m poles are largely allocated for Erosion Control Scheme works throughout the Hawkes Bay region, however 2.5 m grades of all varieties are likely to be available for sale.


Willows need moist soil conditions through summer to grow well. In the drier parts of Hawke’s Bay they should be planted in the dampest sites, but in wetter districts they are highly versatile.

Matsudana Salix matsuana

Tolerates drier soils than most other willows, develops early rough bark (stock and goat resistance). Limited root system and develops moderately spreading crown that can be  prone to wind damage with age. Suitable for erosion control and shelterbelts (requires side trimming). Female clone, not recommended for planting along permanent waterways.

Moutere (Salix matsudana x alba)

Fast growing, multileader but relatively narrow crown.  Requires summer moist sites and suitable for erosion control on streambanks, in gullies and on lower slopes; can also be used for shelter belts or river control works. Male clone, suitable for planting along permanent waterways.

Tangoio (Salix matsudana X alba)

More drought tolerant than Moutere and more wind resistant than Matsudana.  Suitable for erosion control planting on mid-to-upper slopes or for shelter belts; has high leaf protein and best willow for coppice stock fodder. Female clone, not recommended for planting along permanent waterways.


These have similar siting requirements to willows. Poplars normally have a single straight leader and only start to spread at maturity.

Crows Nest (Poplus x euramericana)

Moderately fast growth with light branching and narrow crown, good tolerance for drier sites and wind exposure on mid-to-upper slopes.  Suitable for erosion control and recommended variety for shelter belts

Fraser (Poplus x euramericana)

Moderate growth rate and open, narrow crown.  Similar tolerance for drier sites and wind exposure on mid-to-upper slopes as Crowsnest.  Mainly suitable for erosion control.  New variety, limited availability.


Kawa (Poplus deltoides x yunnanensis)  

Fast growth rate, semi-rough bark and moderate crown with strongly central leader.  Prefers summer moist sites with limited exposure.  Suitable for erosion control and recommended variety for poplar timber (good stem form and relatively high basic wood density). Late bud break and leaf fall compared with other poplars.

Otahuao (Poplus x euramericana) 

Moderate growth rate and full crown, suitable for mid-to-upper slope sites but less tolerant of drier sites and wind exposure than Crowsnest.  Mainly suitable for erosion control.  New variety, limited availability

Veronese (Poplus x euramericana)  

Fast growth rate and moderately narrow crown, suitable for a range of sites and some tolerance for drier sites, mature trees can be susceptible to a degree of wind damage on exposed sites.   Suitable for erosion control, shelterbelts, agroforesty and amenity planting.

Yunnan (Poplus yunnanensis) 

Moderately fast growth, can tend to a spreading crown with heavy branching, susceptible to wind damage when semi-mature. Dark green glossy leaf, late bud break and leaf fall compared with other poplars.  Suitable for erosion control and amenity planting, not recommended for drier or exposed sites. Limited availability.

new illow cover

For further help with ordering, please contact your local Catchment Advisor:

North: Wairoa Area

South: Central Hawke's Bay area

Mid-Hawke’s Bay: Napier/Hastings Area

Useful Documents

Pole Protectors

For best results in cattle grazed areas, plant only 3 metre poles and remove cattle for 1-2 years. Protectors guard against browse damage only. Available from the nursery are:

• Netting Sleeves - Plastic UV resistant netting guards available in 1.1m (sheep size) and 1.7m (cattle size). Must be stapled at top and bottom ends.
• Dynex ‘Pole Protector’ - Plastic UV stabilised guard with a 3-4 year life which gives increased protection from sheep, cattle and goat browsing. A complete tube with built-in air holes and tear line. No need to staple to poles. Available in 1.7m lengths.

Quality Commitment

Nursery management take care to ensure that plant material is of the highest quality and is correctly identified. However, this is not a guarantee of the strike rate or growth rate of the material supplied.

​​​​​​Pole Storage & Planting Guide

Poles should be soaked for up to two weeks before planting. Stand 3m poles with the butt end in 20-40cm of fresh water.

We have various information sheets about siting, planting and management of poles.


​Before Planting, check regulations controlling the distance of trees from community drains (Regional Council) and power wires (Electricity Authority). District Council plans regulate how close trees may be planted to property boundaries.



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