Every branch is covered with fragrant spidery crepe paper flowers that never fail to charm as they furl on cold days and unfurl on warm ones!
It's a darn shame that it is overlooked by most nurseries in favor of the flashier non-native witch-hazels. Just step away from those Chinese witch-hazels and ask for Hamamelis virginiana! You won't be disappointed and that's a promise.
H virginiana is a great all around small tree/shrub for most gardens and those of you who garden for wildlife might consider planting it for the good wildlife value it adds to a shady garden.
In case you are still thinking non-native!
- A tough, adaptable plant suitable for a variety of garden settings (Hardiness Zones: 4-9)
- Tolerates clay soil and poor drainage
- Since it's often the last blooming plant found in most woodlands it's invaluable for providing nectar to late visiting pollinators
- It's upright spreading branches are good nesting sites for birds.
- Some moth caterpillars predate on it
- The dispersed seeds are eaten by birds and small rodents. Now don't turn your nose up at the mere mention of rodents, yes, they are pests, but, they are also extremely important critters for hungry owls and hawks.
- Lovely fragrant, bright yellow flowers that bloom from October through November.
- Great fall foliage color
- It's native to eastern North American, including Louisiana and Texas.
Gail Eichelberger is a gardener and therapist in Middle Tennessee. She loves wildflowers and native plants and thoroughly enjoys writing about the ones she grows at Clay and Limestone. She reminds all that the words and images are the property of the author and cannot be used without written permission.