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Hamamelis Blooms Even In The Snow

In Southern Ontario spring seems to creep in ever so slowly. By late March my mind is thinking of spring and gardening but unfortunately the weather just does not cooperate. That is what makes Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Westerstede’ a flowering shrub to look forward to each year.

Hamamelis x intermedia hybrids are a cross between H. japonica (Japanese witch hazel) and H. mollis (Chinese witch hazel). Their best feature is that they are the first shrubs to bloom in the garden here. Today, the cheery yellow blooms of Westerstede continued to open despite the cold snap and snow we received yesterday. I did notice this year that the blooms were limited to the top several inches of each branch. I don’t think however that this was a winter issue. Hamamelis x intermedia buds develop on new growth from the previous season. Clearly I need to prune my Westerstede harshly this year after blooming to encourage more growth and better blooming in 2012.

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