plant lust list: Hamamelis

plant lust list: Hamamelis

It seems a terrible oversight that Hamamelis aka Witch Hazel is not represented in my garden. And there are so many fab plants to choose from. Thusly, I seek to remedy this omission. I’d love to hear about your favorites.

The photo of this Witch Hazel is in a nearby neighbor’s yard was taken last February. I drove past yesterday, and it’s ready to burst into bloom.

A neighborhood Hamamelis aka Witch Hazel (NoID) keeping us good company.

A neighborhood Hamamelis aka Witch Hazel (NoID). Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Jelena’, perchance?

They can get quite large, can’t they. Something to keep in mind when considering where to plant.

Witch Hazel approaching small tree proportions.

Witch Hazel approaching small tree proportions.

Gossler Farms offers many varieties and I bet those are coming into their own soon. It’d be a terrific time for a road trip. The Gosslers are in Springfield, Oregon, just across I-5 from Eugene. GO DUCKS! (Lest I offend any BEAVERS, I root for them too.)

Ducks visiting the round bed. Maybe it looked like a pond. No Beavers yet.

Ducks visiting the round bed. Maybe it looked like a pond from above. No Beavers yet.

Last October, I wrote about a visit to Gossler Farm. Below is a picture Roger’s dog, Benni. (I may be spelling the name wrong, but that pup is awesome.) Amy Champion of the World’s Best Gardening Blog recently visited Gossler Farms and wrote about it here. Her post includes a photo of Roger in front of one of his “favorites” Hamamelis ‘Jelena’ showing fall color.

Benny's plant delivery cart.

Benni riding the plant delivery cart.

I mentioned in my last post that I’m searching for inspiration. One of the books I’m re-reading is the Gossler Guide to the Best Hardy Shrubs. I generally race through the guide, skim reading and rushing to the next plant. I’m slowing down this time, and reading every word about the Witch Hazels. Honestly, you can’t read of the Gosslers’ love for them and not get Hamamelis lust.

Selection of Hamamelis showing fall color at Gossler Farms.

Selection of Hamamelis in fall color at Gossler Farms.

Since I became familiar with Witch Hazels, Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Arnold Promise’ has been a top pick. Great Plant Picks likes it too. I love the intense yellow flowers, and the fall foliage is terrific too, blazing reds and oranges.

Last winter, I had the lucky occasion to attend a seminar by Roger Gossler.

Roger Gossler holding up a favorite.

Roger Gossler holding up a favorite.

Roger claims each plant is his favorite, and I have every confidence that it’s true. I love that in a plantsperson.

A sampling of Roger's winter interest "favorites".

A sampling of Roger’s winter interest “favorites”.

No doubt I’m thinking more about winter-interest plants because of our unusually cold and snowy winter. But if not now, I’ll forget come bountiful spring.

Saturday, I passed up an opportunity to visit Joy Creek Nursery. They generously threw open their doors to local garden bloggers. I was in the middle of a painting project at home, adding a shade of yellow to the hallway–equivalent to the H. ‘Arnold Promise’ bloom.

Too bright? Maybe when the garden starts blooming again I'll knock it off.

Too bright? Maybe when the garden starts blooming again I’ll knock it off.

Of course, when everyone starts posting about it, I’ll regret my decision. I told myself it’s too early to start buying plants, plus the painting project. But now that I think about, that’s crazy talk. It’s well worth a trip to Joy Creek any time, if only to stand in the bamboo grove.

A previous visit to Joy Creek Nursery.

A previous visit to Joy Creek Nursery.

In late breaking news, a post from The Rainy Day Gardener, Jennifer Gibson Dennis on Joy Creek. Who’s sorry now! 

So how about you, is your plant lust list ready to go? I’m getting the feeling, I’m late, I’m late, I’m late


  • Tim Vojt

    Strike while the iron is hot, my friend. My ‘Jelena’ is on pause, seeing that we’re back to temperatures hovering around freezing. She didn’t get much fall color because she was settling in for her first year and had quite a bit of burned and crispy leaves. That photo of Jelena fall color on the other blog has me already looking forward to next fall…
    Whatever the orange Hamamelis in your neighbor’s yard is stupendous, especially with the lichen on the branches contrasting with the waving streamers.
    Love seeing your Gossler farm cart photo again; it had sent me scurrying to find a tiny Nandina domestica filamentosa, now tiny and almost invisible in my garden.

    • It would be hard to go wrong on the choice. That Thread leaf Nandina is terrific and akin to the Mahonia ‘Soft Caress’. I couldn’t decide which I liked best, so I got both. I really would love to head down to Gosslers and try to focus on the Witch Hazels. They have a terrific Chief Joseph Pine too. Well, everything is terrific, and it’s fun to visit their place year round. I always take a million pictures, but don’t always identify carefully enough. Roger is a terrific host, and knows so much. I can’t keep up.

  • Anna K

    I do like Jelena a lot – especially after Evan’s mouthwatering photos of its orange blossoms covered in snow. Diane is another nice, red one. Alas, I have it on high authority that Arnold’s Promise takes the cake in terms of fragrance. Plus, I personally like how those yellow fuzzies brightens cold winter days up. That said, though – it is a terribly difficult choice. Too bad you didn’t make it out to Joy Creek – you were missed!

    • I know Anna. I’m sorry I missed the opportunity. I just wasn’t ready to tempt myself with plants. Can’t wait to shop Witch Hazels though. But first I have to rearrange the entire garden! Cheers.

      • Anna K

        Ha! You and me both. Let me know when you head down to Gossler Farms. Maybe I could tag along?