Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Hamamelis vernalis 'Blue Moon'

Though it's still winter here in Wisconsin (and many places- when will it end!?) my Vernal Witchhazel is blooming away.  It got a bit of an early start in the storage house.  Of course, not wanting to miss anything I brought it home.  It was outside for about a week, but then the forecast was single digits for overnight lows and it came into the kitchen.  Now it goes back outside, hopefully it's just warm enough for some pollinators as I'd love to grow seedlings.

'Blue Moon' is reportedly a seedling of H. vernalis, but there is some possibility of it being a hybrid.  It's been a moderate grower in its container for me and it will finally find a spot in the landscape this year.  The flowers are a beautiful amethyst-purple and by everything I've read they should be strongly fragrant.  Mine however, is not.  At first I thought it was because of the cold/bronchitis/zombie plague that I'm getting over; but I've gotten at least SOME sense of smell back and there's no scent.  While I'm disappointed by this fact, the flowers are incredibly beautiful and this plant is worth growing just for the flower color!  Hopefully, this is a fluke of the crazy weather we're having and it will be fragrant in the future.  Foliage is a nice blue-green all summer and changes to a beautiful yellow for fall.

For whatever reason, it seems the general gardening community has ignored witch hazels.  Which is unfortunate.  They're often the first thing (or in the case of H. virginiana, the last thing)) to start blooming in my gardens.  They provide color and fragrance at a time when there is very little of both to experience in the landscape.  On top of that, they usually have fantastic fall color in shades of yellow, orange, red, and burgundy.  If you have room for a large shrub, pick one up.  You won't be disappointed!


  1. I would plant a Witch Hazel in a heartbeat if I had room for one...and seeing this, I would pick this very one!

  2. I love this one! I do have two witch hazels and they have been very slow for me... the rabbits also seem to adore them!
    You asked what magnolias I'm adding this spring... if you go backward six posts to one from March 9th called "It's official", I have discussed the plants I have coming. hanks, Larry

  3. Sounds like you have some great Magnolias coming, Larry! Can't wait to see pics once they start blooming! I'm hoping to get my 2 big silver maples taken down soon so I have room for the 2 Magnolias I still have in pots! I have some woody plants coming at the end of the week you might be interested in. Watch for a post about their arrival and addition to our catalog!

    Scott, maybe you can make room for one of the dwarf ones? Somewhere? :) You can't be totally out of space yet! At least you have Parrotia, it's a witch hazel relative.


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