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HAMAMELIS mollis 'Sweet Sunshine'

Image of Hamamelis mollis 'Sweet Sunshine'

Mark A. Miller

Family

Hamamelidaceae

Botanical Name

HAMAMELIS mollis 'Sweet Sunshine'

Plant Common Name

Chinese Witchhazel, Sweet Sunshine Chinese Witchhazel

Special Notice

This entry has yet to be reviewed and approved by L2G editors.

General Description

Mid- and late winter is made much more exciting with the extremely fragrant, spider-like blossoms of the Chinese witchhazel. A rounded, densely branched deciduous shrub from southeastern China, it is relatively rare to be found in the secondary forests there. The leaves are broadly oval, dull green with fuzzy, gray-green undersides. In autumn, they become a lovely gold or orange-yellow. Upon the bare, brown branches in late winter will be tufts of thin, crinkly yellow petals like look like tiny, short ribbons. The petal bases have touches of rusty orange or orange-red. The sweet, spicy and pungent aroma is magnificent, lifting your spirits on even the chilliest or dreariest of days.

Chinese witchhazel is best grown in a soil with good drainage. It can adapt to acidic, and mildly alkaline soils that are moist and deep, with ample organic compositions. Plant one to soften the corner of a house, to bring late winter excitement to any garden border, or plant in a small grove near a public patio or walkway so the fragrance will be obvious and create smiles. Cultivar 'Coombe Wood' is extremely fragrantly flowered and 'Goldcrest' has larger petals that open a bit later in the season.

This species is one of parent plants for the highly ornamental hybrid witchhazel, Hamamelis x intermedia.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 4

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    5 - 8

  • Sunset Zone

    2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 15, 16, 17

  • Plant Type

    Shrub

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    10'-30' / 3.0m - 9.1m (15)

  • Bloom Time

    Winter, Late Winter

  • Native To

    China

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam

  • Tolerances

    Drought

  • Growth Rate

    Slow

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant, Average Water

  • Habit

    Oval/Rounded

  • Seasonal Interest

    Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Light Yellow, Lemon Yellow, Bronze

  • Flower Color Modifier

    Multi-Color

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Yellow, Orange, Gold

  • Bark Color

    Brown

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Coarse

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Feature Plant, Foundation, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No