Hamamelis virginiana, known as common witch hazel, is a fall-blooming, deciduous shrub or small tree that is native to woodlands, forest margins and stream banks in eastern North America. It typically grows 4,50-6 m (15-20’) tall with a similar spread in cultivation, but can reach 9 m (30’) tall in its native habitat. Stem-hugging clusters of fragrant bright yellow flowers, each with four crinkly, ribbon-shaped petals, appear along the branches from October to December, usually after leaf drop but sometimes at the time of fall color. Fertilized flowers will form fruit over a long period extending through winter and into the following growing season. Fruits are greenish seed capsules that become woody with age and mature to light brown. Each seed capsule splits open in fall of the following year, exploding the 1-2 black seeds within for up to 9 m (30'). Oval to obovate, medium to dark green leaves (to 15 cm (6”) long) with dentate to wavy margins turn quality shades of yellow in fall. Plants of this species are usually the last native flowering plants to bloom in Missouri each year.
Easily grown in average, medium, well-drained soils in full sun to part shade. Best flowering in full sun. Prefers moist, acidic, organically rich soils. Tolerates heavy clay soils. Promptly remove suckers to prevent colonial spread. Little pruning is required. Prune in early spring if necessary.
Information source: www.missouribotanicalgarden.org.
Genus - Hamamelis
Species - Virginiana
Common name - Witchhazel
Pre-Treatment - Required
Hardiness zones - 3 - 8
Height - 4 - 6 m
Spread - 4 - 6 m
Plant type - Shrub
Vegetation type - Deciduous
Exposure - Full Sun, Partial Sun, Partial Shade
Growth rate - Medium
Soil PH - Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline
Soil type - Clay, Loam, Well Drained
Water requirements - Drought Tolerant, Average Water
Landscape uses - Wonderful for naturalistic areas and woodland gardens. Plant it where its fragrance and beauty can best be enjoyed. Shrub borders, woodland gardens. Screen or tall hedge.
Bloom season - Late Fall, Early Winter, Winter
Leaf / Flower color - Green, Dark Green, autumn- yellow, gold / Yellow, Light Yellow
1. Soak seeds in very warm water for 24 hours.
2. Mix with vermiculite or another sterile / clean peat, sand or soil and stratify in the fridge at +2-+4C for 90-120 days. It will increase the germination percentage.
3. Seeds should be planted after the pretreatment in pots and generally grown in them for up to two to three years before they are mature enough to transplant.
Flowering does not start until the plants are at least six years old.
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