Best of the bunch
●● Witch hazel (Hamamelis) FRAGRANT, spidery blooms in shades of yellow, orange and red make these mediumsized to large deciduous shrubs a must-have for the winter garden.
The eye-catching flowers, with ribbonlike petals, cluster on bare stems from autumn to early spring, undamaged by frost.
They are great as specimen plants in border or grown in groups. Witch hazels prefer reasonably fertile, moist but well-drained, neutral to acid soil, in sun or partial shade in an open spot. In late winter or early spring, prune any crossing shoots to keep a good shape. Good varieties include H x intermedia ‘Pallida’, which as a vase-shaped habit and whose bright green leaves turn gold in autumn, and H x intermedia ‘Diana’, a fine red-flowered variety.