Monday, April 09, 2007

Buttercup Winterhazel (Corylopsis pauciflora)

Buttercup Winterhazel
Corylopsis pauciflora
(kor-uh-LOP-sis) (PAW-ki-flor-uh)

Now is the time of the year that the Winter Hazel become a standout in the garden. It is one of the few things blooming around here. I have tried it a few times and met with less than success but I still enjoy seeing it, I may try again because its failure was probably my fault. Sometimes if a plant doesn’t work out I never try it again and that is not the best way to approach it. I think I end up missing out on some plants because I am wary of the results. This plant is a star performer early in the spring and then it fades into the background. It has a graceful shape that shouldn’t really pruned because then it starts growing at odd angles. Since it is such an early bloomer planting it in a sheltered location is probably a wise course of action. It can tolerate a light shade and looks good on the edge of the woods. I have seen it planted in masses and as a single specimen, both with good results. The drooping yellow flowers are fragrant. There are several other species that grow in the garden. In general I think you find this plant hard to locate and as I remember mine came from a mail-order catalog. Please don’t be turned off by my experiences it is a lovely shrub that is a great addition to the early spring garden.

This is almost a good picture but not quite. I am still trying to figure out exactly what I did to make the flower stand out in an abstract way. This is a shot that would have benefited from a tripod.

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