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'Early Bright' Witch Hazel

Hamamelis mollis 'Early Bright' is a Chinese witch hazel prized for its fragrant winter flowers.

Common name: 'Early Bright' Chinese witch hazel

Botanical name:Hamamelis mollis 'Early Bright'

Virtues: Very early bloom (as early as January in Pennsylvania); highly fragrant flowers.

Foliage: Oval, medium green leaves that turn yellow in fall.

Flowers: Golden yellow firecracker-like blooms. Strong sweet fragrance. Appearing in winter on bare branches.

Habit: Deciduous shrub to 12 feet tall and wide.

Season: Late winter, for bloom.

Origin: Introduced by the Scott Arboretum of Swarthmore College in 1988. Steve Wheaton, then Director of Grounds, noticed a Chinese witch hazel that consistently bloomed two weeks earlier than its neighbors. Wheaton worked with Andrew Bunting, now Scott Arboretum's Curator, to select, name and release 'Early Bright'.

Cultivation: Grow in moist, well-drained, acidic or neutral soil. Full sun to part shade. USDA Zones 5–9.