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HAMAMELIS x intermedia 'Arnold Promise'

Image of Hamamelis x intermedia 'Arnold Promise'

Jessie Keith

Family

Hamamelidaceae

Botanical Name

HAMAMELIS x intermedia 'Arnold Promise'

Plant Common Name

Arnold Promise Showy Witchhazel, Showy Witchhazel

General Description

A well-known and highly revered selection, ‘Arnold Promise’ boasts extra large flowers of brilliant yellow that really stand out in the winter landscape. It also offers vigorous growth, a lovely vase-shaped habit and fine fall color. It was introduced in 1963 by The Arnold Arboretum, the arboretum of Harvard University in Boston.

This late winter blooming hybrid shrub is certainly the most widely celebrated. In the last dreary days of winter its branches become dotted with fragrant, colorful, spidery flowers. The vase-shaped shrub blends and amplifies the great ornamental characteristics of its two parents, Chinese witchhazel (Hamamelis mollis) and Japanese witchhazel (H. japonica).

Witchhazel has dull dark green leaves that are broadly oval with wavy edges and short tips. The new leaves are glossier on top and paler and slightly fuzzy beneath. In autumn they turn shades of gold with deep orange and red tones. The bark is smooth and gray-brown, but the smaller twigs, from which the flowers arise, are lighter in color. In late winter and early spring, lots of bright golden yellow flowers appear. These have four long, thin and crinkly petals. They are boldly fragrant, both sweet and spicy, and may last for a month.

Plant witchhazel in full to partial sun and organic-rich, acid or neutral soil with even moisture and good drainage. Simply put: the more sun, the grander the flower show. Its growth is considerably slower in drier soils and hot locations.

This shrub is a wonderful specimen plant for open landscapes, foundations, mixed borders or public landscapes – from parks and campuses to commercial courtyard and entrance gardens. It looks especially lovely when low groundcovers and early spring bulbs blanket the soil under the branches.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    8 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    5 - 8

  • Sunset Zone

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

  • Plant Type

    Shrub

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun, Partial Shade

  • Height

    12'-15' / 3.7m - 4.6m

  • Width

    12'-15' / 3.7m - 4.6m

  • Bloom Time

    Early Spring, Winter, Late Winter

  • Native To

    Hybrid Origin

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Spreading

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Yellow, Gold

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Blue Green, Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Yellow, Orange, Orange Red

  • Bark Color

    Sandy Brown, Gray

  • 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

  • Showy Bark

    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