October…..time for Witch Hazel

Witch Hazel is not the crazy old lady down the street that would dress up for Halloween and scare neighborhood kids while collecting candy. Witch Hazel is Hamamelis virginiana, one of my favorite plants in the landscape.

Witch Hazel leaves in a bed of Lamium groundcover

The fall color in October is spectacular. Orange, red and yellow hues all on the same plant with unique textured foliage make this plant a winner in October. The plant has a great history with the astringent distilled from its bark a household staple for generations. Native Americans and early European settlers used Witch Hazel as a cure all. Witch Hazel is used in  medicated wipes, facial treatments, shampoos and other personal care items.

WitchHazel leaves in a bed of Lamium groundcover

Witch Hazel is one of those items that has become a part of Americana personal care like Baking Soda. In the landscape the plant is easy to grow. Aside from the fall color mentioned and pictured above, the spring flowers

Spring flowers on Witch Hazel
Spring flowers on Witch Hazel

are very unique and are some of the first flowers in my northern landscape often blooming in March.

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