Tree Watch: Not Just White

IMG_4126On the 7th of each month Lucy hosts a tree watching meme on her Loose and Leafy blog. Although some bloggers have changed the trees they were observing after the first year I am sticking with my little witch hazel, Hamamelis vernalis ‘Amethyst’, partly as I only joined in the meme a few months ago, but also, as a very young tree it will be interesting to see how it changes as it grows, alongside its seasonal differences.

It is now fully in flower, and this picture shows clearly how the tissue paper like shreds burst from the little round buds which grow in clusters of about three – is it always three? Something to check on my next ramble… The flowers are noticeably smaller than those on my other witch hazels, at least half the size of the longest ones like Harry and Jelena – and let’s be honest, they are more pink than the purple their name suggests but hey, she’s still a pretty young thing and will break a few hearts when she grows up. Give her another 10 years…..

IMG_4125A picture of the whole tree shows there is still one dried leaf clinging on tightly – a gentle tug does not remove it and I don’t want to try yanking it. What does need to be removed is the stake which is tied quite tightly to the stem with tape. As the plant was freshly dug for me (literally) by Bluebell Nurseries it probably needed the cane to support it in the open field it came from, but it is more sheltered here and a little bit of wind-sway will strengthen the stem. It should be safe in its position at the edge of the paved area and in view of the kitchen window, as there little risk of us brushing past it roughly.

Observing Amethyst regularly for this meme has made me even more observant of my other witch hazels. I have especially noticed the variation in flowering times, and checking back on earlier posts can see that there is no consistent order of flowering, with Arnold Promise sometimes being the first and sometimes the last. It is fully in flower now (below left), just behind Ruby Glow (below right) which is slowly beginning to glow, serendipitously shown here with Cornus Midwinter Fire glowing brightly in the background. Much as I love my white preciouses it’s so lovely to have this winter colour,Β  and hopefully the witch hazels will still be flowering this time next month too.


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28 Responses to Tree Watch: Not Just White

  1. I am glad you are sticking with your tree….what a beautiful flower for such a small tree. I hope my small witch hazel will finally bloom this year.

    • Cathy says:

      Yes, she does herself proud, doesn’t she? I too hope yours flowers soon – do you mean this winter or next? I think mine have had flowers on from the start, although they were all were from reputable growers – you can buy cheap ‘twigs’ from some catalogues in the UK but they could take a few years to flower I suppose.

  2. Witch hazel flowers aren’t like any other are they – with that tissue paper twisted effect? Must say I’m attracted by the red ‘Glow’.

    • Cathy says:

      They are almost unreal aren’t they? Ruby Glow’s flowers are a different shade of red from Diana and when in full flower they really stand out

  3. rusty duck says:

    Amethyst is undoubtedly in the pink. Nice to see one that’s a little bit different.

  4. I’ve never seen such a pretty little tree–good for you sticking with her. I’m curious, when the witch hazel tree is full grown, do those clusters of pink paper fireworks cover the whole tree?

    • Cathy says:

      They are very open trees, Susan, and the flowers seem to vary on different varieties – some flower on short stems all the way up the branches but some have clusters of flowers on the lower half of the branches. It’s fascinating to observe the differences πŸ™‚

  5. Catherine says:

    What a very pretty tree, and flowers are an especially welcome sight at this time of year aren’t they?

  6. rickii says:

    Another meme that calls on us to be more observant…ain’t blogging grand?

  7. bittster says:

    I’m still amazed by that color. I guess it is on the pink side, but it sure will show off well against your other witch hazels.

  8. Tina says:

    I have to agree with others, I’m glad you’re sticking to the witch hazel. I just love those blooms and what a great winter tree. The ‘Amethyst’ is quite a show stopper.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks for dropping in Tina. It’s still quite small to be a show stopper yet – but I can see it from the house which is an asset πŸ˜‰

  9. AnnetteM says:

    A beautiful coloured witch hazel – so unusual.

  10. Anna says:

    Pink or purple she is still rather special Cathy. I’m seriously tempted by her or/and by ‘Livia’. We went garden centre visiting last Sunday but nothing in the offing. I think that a specialist nursery is called for in this instance and a raid on my piggy bank.

    • Cathy says:

      I believe larch Cottage Nurseries near Penrith have a good selection of witch hazels…. My first few came from a Midlands garden that once had a National collection but Amethyst and a couple of the other less common ones came from Bluebell Nurseries which is fairly local. I am looking out for Strawberries and Cream ever since Chloris showed it…

  11. Chloris says:

    It is such a lovely colour although I don’ t know why it is called Amethyst. It is more pink as you say. But it is gorgeous.
    My Arnold Promise is only just coming into bloom. It is so much later than the others.

    • Cathy says:

      When I look at the close-up picture in the post I can almost see why it might be called amethyst as it is a very purplish shade of pink! What’s in name though?! Two years ago my AP was last to bloom, not so last year, but almost the last again now – they must respond differently to the weather conditions I suppose. It keeps us on our toes, I guess! Glad yours has flowered this year though

  12. i love your tree and its pink papers. Not seen this particular variety. Glad you stuck with it for the meme.

  13. A beautiful tree, and I can only second what everyone else has said about the color. It’s very eye-catching!

  14. Hollis says:

    Neat flowers! thanks for sticking with the tree πŸ™‚

  15. Christina says:

    I love that everyone has chosen such different trees and especially that you chose young trees; I’m sure it makes you love them even more!

  16. Annette says:

    Things are defintely looking more positive, touch of spring in the air here and it’ll be very sunny and milder this week so I shall be out and start spring-cleaning. My Hamamelis Diane is very late this year but Primavera is flowering nicely. Finally found a place for my tiny birch wood too, Cathy! Very excting. Love Midwinter Fire and planted it in different places…they should glow eventually when they get bigger.

  17. Cathy I took my grandsons to a garden Sunday where there were some witchhazels, I now actually know what these shrubs are thanks to bloggers like you and I am better able to imagine yours, the flowers are quite amazing, yours look lovely and I quite like the shorter flower length some of the longer ones look like they are having a bad hair day, Frances

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