I can’t take my eyes off her. Or my camera away from her. I also can’t help wondering if I would be as enraptured if Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Jelena’ bloomed at a normal time with other normal spring, summer and fall blooming plants instead of the middle of a white-out winter. — But the flowers are weird enough and its fragrance sweet enough that I’m pretty sure it would be my favorite thing in the whole world whenever it bloomed.
I also can’t help wondering why the fershlug this witch hazel blooms now instead when pollinating insects are out and about. I’m sure attracted to her but who else would be? Syrphid flies are early but I haven’t seen any yet… (Hamamelis virginiana, which blooms in the fall, is similarly handicapped. I read that winter moth might provide pollination service for it in return for nectar.) My guess is that Jelena and her kin (‘Diane’, ‘Arnold’s Promise’, etc) are all for show at least in this neck of the woods — H. x intermedia being a cross of a couple of Asian species, not anything native. I’d be pretty sad about that if I didn’t enjoy the show quite so much. It must go on. Brava, Jelena. Applause, applause!
Do you know of any wildlife that might love this plant as much as you and I do?