American Witchhazel: This weeks plant to look for

Witchhazel, Hamamelis virginiana is an understory small tree or shrub that is common in the Finger Lakes. The Witchhazel PlantIn the fall the coarsely toothed leaves turn a beautiful golden color. What is even more remarkable is they start to flower in the fall after its leaves turn. The yellow flowers have four crinkled narrow petals. This is the last woody plant to flower in the area. Pollination is done by a moth and the capsules take a year to mature. So the old brown capsules you see on the plant are 2 years old. The capsules that are ripe now are light green in color. They were flowers last fall. As you hike this week look for the beautiful Witchhazel, it is sure to catch your eye.  For more information:  http://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/plant-of-the-week/hamamelis_virginiana.shtml

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