On 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…..
A 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, and hopefully the witch hazels will still be flowering this time next month too.