Hardy, deciduous, Eastern North American shrub
Description: Small, fragrant, yellow flowers appear after the leaves have dropped in late autumn; flowers are composed of four strap-shaped petals; foliage turns yellow in fall
Habit: Erect shrub grows 12-15 feet high and 12 feet wide
Culture: Prefers full sun to part shade and moist, but well-drained, moderately rich soil that is acidic to neutral
Hardiness: Cold hardy to USDA Zone 3
Origin: North America
Attributes: Deer resistant, fall color
This large, fragrant flowering native shrub is the traditional source of the scent for Witch Hazel liniment. Potted plants were sent to England by John Clayton of Virginia, in 1743, and arrived "at Christmas and were then in full bloom". The recipient, naturalist Mark Catesby, must have been impressed at a time when the majority of plants sent on long sea voyages perished. Catesby illustrated Witch Hazel in his major work, The Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahaman Islands, published in sections beginning in 1729. This shrub is not attractive to deer.