Tennessee Smart Yards Native Plants

A comprehensive database of Tennessee native plants

American Witchhazel, Common Witch Hazel

American Witchhazel, Common Witch Hazel

Hamamelis virginiana

Sun to light shade; moderately wet to moderately dry moisture level; prefers rich organic soil but tolerates clay soils; ? pH.

8-20 feet height by 8-20 feet spread; blooms in fall; golden yellow flowers; light brown seed capsules that form over a long period into the following growing season.

Growth Rate:  Fast when young

Maintenance:  Easy to grow.  Produces suckers which should be promptly removed to control spread if desired.  No serious insect or disease problems.  Pruning is rarely needed; prune early spring if necessary.

Propagation:  Difficult from cuttings and moderately difficult from seed

Native Region:  Eastern half of state and western portion of the Highland Rim

Large shrub or small tree with a multi-stemmed, vase-shaped habit.  Leaves turn a unique, apricot yellow in fall.  Flowers are showy and fragrant. Flowers in fall when leaves are yellow and falling, so blooms are not as easily seen.  Native to woodlands, forest margins and streambanks.


2 responses to “American Witchhazel, Common Witch Hazel

  1. joystewart June 22, 2014 at 9:20 pm

    I bought a large, beautiful potted shrub of this species last fall and it got off to a good start. Now here it is mid-summer and the poor shrub is infested in an absolute cloud of Japanese beetles. Nearly every single leaf is so chewed that the leaves have turned brown. I think all I did was buy a dinner feast for Japanese beetles. If you already have some of these beetles in your yard and you are looking for a native shrub, you might want to think about substituting a different species. I suppose the plant will survive this onslaught but it is hard to watch.

  2. Hugh Conlon January 20, 2018 at 10:01 pm

    Due to the huge size that American witchhazel can grow, I urge gardeners to look for a smaller 5-7 foot form named ‘Little Susie’, discovered and introduced by Harald Neubauer, TN Nurseryman in Belvidere. Another selection, ‘Harvest Moon’ is also touted for its fall leaf color.

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