Monday, January 23, 2012

Blooming Today: Jelena Witch Hazel

Last spring we added four witch hazels to our garden, Hamamelis x intermedia 'Jelena'.  I had only seen pictures of these but loved the unusual flower form, the great color of the blooms, and the intense hues of the autumn leaves.  I crossed my fingers that the ones we got were correctly labeled;  you know how it is with tags sometimes.

early fall, Hamamelis 'Jelena'

Just a few days ago, I  told Karin at Southern Meadows (also in zone 7b) that I had no witch hazel blooms yet, but yesterday I walked out to look again and found that two of the shrubs do have a few blooms!

The brown leaves of last season still cling to the shrubs, so I didn't notice flowers at first. Do you know if it is characteristic of this plant to retain the dead leaves?  I hope not;  it's ugly.  I didn't notice a scent, either.  Has fragrance been sacrificed for bigger flowers (ie. hybrid tea roses)?  Maybe 'Jelena' releases scent at particular times or in certain weather.  If you know, please leave a comment.  I do hope it is fragrant.

Even without fragrance, the blooms are nice.  My artistic son took a glance at my photos and decided they look like crayon shavings.  Crinkly, waxy --  I can see it, can't you?


UPDATE February 2, 2012:  Jelena IS fragrant!  It doesn't seem to float through the air like winter honeysuckle, but up close it's nice.