A Fall Beauty – Witchhazel
Witchhazel has long been used as a soothing rub for aching muscles, itchy bug bites and scrapes. This wonder compound is derived from the Witchhazel plant and can still be found in your local drugstore.
Witchhazel is also a beautiful and useful landscape plant. The north American native, common witchhazel, adds a splash of color to the fall and winter garden. The large green leaves turn yellow. And as they drop they reveal the beautiful fragrant yellow flowers that can persist for several weeks. This large shrub is hardy in zones 3 to 9 and tolerates full sun and shade and somewhat dry soil.
Vernal witchhazel is the late winter or early spring bloomer. Yellow, orange, or red flowers appear sometime between January and March and last for several weeks. Native to Missouri, Louisiana and Oklahoma, this durable plant is hardy in zones 4 to 8 and provides fall color and winter blooms.
A bit more information: Chinese witchhazel is the most fragrant of these. Grow it as a large shrub or small tree and place it where you can enjoy its beauty and fragrant flower in February or March.