Monday, February 2, 2009

Hamamelis x intermedia 'Jelena'......Groundhog day brings good Witchhazel weather

This is the cultivar Jelena, a hybrid produced from crossing the Japanese and the Chinese Witchhazels. There are a number of cultivars originating from this cross. Hamamelis sinensis tends to be more fragrant while Hamamelis japonica is, possibly, more deciduous but doesn't smell so nice. They hybrids are wonderful and this is one of the best. I have always liked it and 'Diane' for their fall color and wonderful blooms. Clicking on the closeup will show the straplike ribbons that are its petals. They roll up into tight coils at night or when temperatures are too cold; today was not too cold and the plants were spectacular.

These pictures were taken at the Arboretum at the base of the Witchhazel Collection that runs from the top of Hickey Hill down to Conifer Road. While cold weather will likely keep the flowers coiled for the next three days, temperatures over the weekend are expected to rise to the high 50s F so it will be perfect Witchhazel weather. Some of the Flowering Apricots, Prunus mume with their delicious fragrances ought to be in bloom by then. Chimonanthus praecox, Winterhazel is yet another wonderfully fragrant winter flowering shrub and we have them all around the Arboretum.

I am watching Groundhog Day as I write this post. It is one of my favorite movies and I watch it every year on Feb 1st or 2nd. To my mind it poses serious and challenging questions about the nature of knowledge, reality, and the way we ought to live our lives. Maybe I just like it.


Amy said...

I love that movie too, have seen it many times. My Mom also watches it every year on the day. Interesting.

David said...

What a neat looking plant, I suspect it's beyond the reach of my garden too hot here in Sydney.