Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Jelena’
‘Jelena’ is among the most impressive of the witchhazels we grow here at the Scott Arboretum. She’s a hybrid cultivar of the Chinese witchhazel (Hamamelis mollis) and the Japanese witchhazel (Hamamelis japonica), and like both of her parents, she flowers in the dead of winter when we’re desperate for a bit of garden interest. She is striking when in bloom —curled, strappy petals emerge from a burgundy calyx cup and are red at the base, orange in the middle, and yellowish at the very tip, giving the flowers the appearance of dancing flames. Incredibly, these blossoms remain effective for a month or even more! What’s more, ‘Jelena’ drops her spent leaves prior to blooming, unlike many other witchhazels whose ragged foliage obscures their floral display. ‘Jelena’ has a beautiful growth habit that further magnifies her garden-worthiness. It is an elegantly broad-spreading shrub with graceful branches that grows slowly to a maximum size of 20′ high and wide.