For plants, distinguishing between mutualistic and pathogenic microbes is a matter of survival. All microbes contain microbe-associated molecular patterns (MAMPs) that are perceived by plant pattern recognition receptors (PRRs). Lysin motif receptor-like kinases (LysM-RLKs) are PRRs attuned for binding and triggering a response to specific MAMPs, including chitin oligomers (COs) in fungi, lipo-chitooligosaccharides (LCOs), which are produced by mycorrhizal fungi and nitrogen-fixing rhizobial bacteria, and peptidoglycan in bacteria. The identification and characterization of LysM-RLKs in candidate bioenergy crops including Populus are limited compared to other model plant species, thus inhibiting our ability to both understand and engineer microbe-mediated gains in plant productivity. As such, we performed a sequence analysis of LysM-RLKs in the Populus genome and predicted their function based on phylogenetic analysis with known LysM-RLKs. Then, using predictive models, molecular dynamics simulations, and comparative structural analysis with previously characterized CO and LCO plant receptors, we identified probable ligand-binding sites in Populus LysM-RLKs. Using several machine learning models, we predicted remarkably consistent binding affinity rankings of Populus proteins to CO. In addition, we used a modified Random Walk with Restart network-topology based approach to identify a subset of Populus LysM-RLKs that are functionally related and propose a corresponding signal transduction cascade. Our findings provide the first look into the role of LysM-RLKs in Populus-microbe interactions and establish a crucial jumping-off point for future research efforts to understand specificity and redundancy in microbial perception mechanisms.