Common name: Chinese witch hazel
Hamamelis 'Brevipetala' is an upright, vase-shaped deciduous shrub which grows to about 4 metres (13 feet) in height. It is a hybrid cross between Hamamelis mollis (Chinese witch hazel) and Hamamelis vernalis (Vernal witch hazel). H. 'Brevipetala' blooms from mid to late winter. Its golden yellow flowers consisting of four short, narrow, crinkled petals bloom on bare branches. They are showy and fragrant. The best flowering is when the shrub is in full sun.
'Brevipetala' means short-petaled in reference to the length of the flower petals. H. 'Brevipetala' was introduced into commerce in the mid 1900s by Chenault Nursery in Orleans, France.
This plant keeps some of its leaves over the winter. See Garden Story on marcescence.
This shrub can be found in Bed 98 and 13B. The photos were taken of the shrub in Bed 98 of the Sino-Himalayan Garden this winter (2023).
Text and photos by Kumi Sutcliffe