Chris Lane-Witch Hazel Expert

Chris Lane-Witch Hazel Expert

On March 14, Chris Lane, internationally recognized as a witch hazel (Hamamelis) expert, visited the Scott Arboretum. While touring the 40 different kinds of witch hazels at the Scott Arboretum, he helped us identify some plants which had suspect identities and discussed some of his favorite witch hazels.

He commented on the stunning yellow Hamamelis x intermedia ‘Primavera’ and ‘Sunburst’. His personal favorite is ‘Aurora’ which has the largest flowers yet seen on a witch hazel. They are deep yellow with tints of burgundy and produce a good fragrance. He commented that one of the most fragrant selections is ‘Orange Beauty’. Our Hamamelis collection can be found around the Women’s Resource Center, Olde Club, and Kitao Student Art Gallery.

At his home in Kent, England Chris holds the National Collection for Hamamelis which comprises over 250 different types. His Royal Horticultural Society Plant Collector Guide-Witch Hazels published by Timber Press is a highly valuable reference on the genus.

While viewing the collections, Chris also told us that he is on the Woody Trial Committee for the Royal Horticultural Society. They have just completed a massive trial on the cultivars of Hydrangea paniculata and will be presenting their top award, AGM (Award of Garden Merit) to ‘Limelight’, ‘Phantom’, ‘Big Ben’ and Pinky WinkyTM. H. paniculata ‘Limelight’ was featured at the 2007 Scott Associates’ Plant Sale. A planting of ‘Limelight’can be found at the Scott Arboretum behind Parrish Hall next to the Parrish West Circle.

Andrew Bunting
  • Ronald Schilb
    Posted at 10:29h, 09 June Reply

    We would love to have Chris visit us at Wegerzyn Gardens in Dayton, OH we have been working with Tim Brozman for a number of years and I believe we have 110 different witch hazel cultivars and over 120 plants (this may be the largest collection of Witch Hazels in the US. Our collection is in a river bottom area and is zone 5 – 6. Most of our plants are very healthy and are performing well. We would love to have any and all visit us or contact us. Chris Jensen is the Horticulturalist on site. I am an employee – volunteer who assists Chris regularly.

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