By PhilipC

Which Hazel is this?

Hamamelis or Wych Hazel or Witch Hazel… The botanical name is said to mean 'together with fruit', since the fruit of last year and the flowers of this year can be seen at the same time (as in this photo). It is winter flowering, and adds colour to the grey landscape. Wych comes from the Old English wice meaning 'bendable' (as also in Wych Elm). Later, possibly because Hazel, among other shrubs/trees, was used for divining rods, the association with 'magic' may have led to a change from the unfamiliar wych to the more familar 'witch'. The RHS has decided for 'Witch Hazel'. Being rather bolshie, I therefore prefer Wych Hazel!
This was taken at a 'practice shoot' of flowers at Raemoir Garden Centre near Banchory. We were there because each year on or around my birthday they send an invitation to 'Coffee and Scones for Two'! Sadly for me, they do not do gluten free scones, but I could watch Helen eating hers with enjoyment! PS: I got a meringue, which is not at all the same thing as a good Scottish scone.

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