Hamamelis virginiana, Witch Hazel

Tried and True Native Plant Selections for the Mid-Atlantic

It is in autumn that the twisted, spider-like, fragrant flowers of the species of Hamamelis illuminate the landscape in pale yellow. The Virginia Native Plant Society named Witch Hazel as Wildflower of the Year in 2002.

Print Version: Hamamelis virginiana, Witch Hazel

Shrub, Height: 15–20 feet, Spread: 15–20 feet, Bloom color: Yellow, Deciduous tall shrub or small tree with multistemmed clump or low branching form, Medium green, broadly oval, scalloped leaves, Four yellow, twisted ribbon-like petals cluster on upper branches from September to December, Green seed capsules mature over a year to a light brown & when flowers next appear eject their seeds, Yellow to pale orange fall foliage, Spreads by seeds although suckers can form colony, Tolerates heavy clay soil and erosion, No serious pests (though Japanese beetles may munch leaves) or diseases; deer occasionally severely damage; rabbits browse on seedlings, Medicinal uses, Attracts flies & wasps; larval hosts to some moths, Soil Requirements: Average, well-drained, Light Requirements: Full Sun, Partial Shade, Water Requirements: Moist, Protect from constant wind, Remove suckers promptly to prevent spread; prune in early spring if needed, Use as specimen, patio tree, or in a container, Hardiness: USDA Zones 3–8, Excellent Replacement for Acer tataricum var. ginnala - Amur Maple, Elaeagnus umbellata - Autumn Olive, Rhamnus cathartica - Buckthorn

Learn more about other Mid-Atlantic plants: Tried and True Plant Fact Sheets


Tags: Shrub, Height: 15–20 feet, Spread: 15–20 feet, Bloom color: Yellow, Deciduous tall shrub or small tree with multistemmed clump or low branching form, Medium green, broadly oval, scalloped leaves, Four yellow, twisted ribbon-like petals cluster on upper branches from September to December, Green seed capsules mature over a year to a light brown & when flowers next appear eject their seeds, Yellow to pale orange fall foliage, Spreads by seeds although suckers can form colony, Tolerates heavy clay soil and erosion, No serious pests (though Japanese beetles may munch leaves) or diseases; deer occasionally severely damage; rabbits browse on seedlings, Medicinal uses, Attracts flies & wasps; larval hosts to some moths, Soil Requirements: Average, well-drained, Light Requirements: Full Sun, Partial Shade, Water Requirements: Moist, Protect from constant wind, Remove suckers promptly to prevent spread; prune in early spring if needed, Use as specimen, patio tree, or in a container, Hardiness: USDA Zones 3–8, Excellent Replacement for Acer tataricum var. ginnala – Amur Maple, Elaeagnus umbellata – Autumn Olive, Rhamnus cathartica – Buckthorn