So my third willow basket has happened at lightning speed. In January my younger son and his wife donated a red wig for my car:
This was some overgrown willow from their Devon garden. I don't know a great deal about all the various willows, but this had the advantage of beautiful colour variations from yellow to red, and the disadvantage of being rather thick-stemmed with lots of side shoots. When I got it home I spent ages trimming off the sideshoots, and used the thickest rods to create a screen for some of our compost bins. The rest went in the bath to increase its pliability (not our only bath, in case you were wondering):
As I worked with it, I learned a lot about which rods were really too thick for the job in hand, so the outcome was a rough-and-ready (artisanal?) basket which has now gone back to Devon to hold logs for the willow-providers. They are kind enough to say it's fine. As it's the first basket I've made without expert supervision, I'm grateful to them, but shall be aiming higher next time.