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Thursday, 7 March 2019

Catkins in Winter and Early Spring

There are so many beautiful catkins that carry us through the winter and last well into spring.

Above is the Corylus avellana 'Contorta' or corkskrew hazel which has had these beautiful catkins for months. They are more colourful than flowers. The hazel catkind seam to really last a long time right throgh winter.

Such a variety of catkins and variation in colour.

Corylus (Hazel)
Catkins are fabulously important additions to our gardens providing crucial nectar supplies for the bumble bees.
The long lambs tails on the Hazel bushes are a winter delight and an absolute picture when coated with icy frost.

 Corylus avellana will have the standard green leaves and maxima ‘Purpurea’ has dark purple leaves as the name suggests.
Corylis avellana maxima Purpurea

I have celebrated the lovely birch bark but note that they also have little catkins!
The Kilmarnock willow or the weeping pussy willow has soft little furry catkins. It’s a perfect little tree and can look lovely in a pot.

Kilmarnock willow

The bees love these catkins

Pink Pussy Willow is really striking.
This is Salix gracilistyla mount aso.
I should say take a look at the ghostly silver Garrya elliptica but not in my garden this year! All mine have barely a catkin as they were mascaraed last year for our holly wreath workshops! It has always been shrouded in a waterfall of catkins.

Garrya elliptica
I have a silk tassel bush which adorns the front of my house and I find the crinkly silver foliage cascading with catkins perfect for its position. Its slightly sheltered on a south west wall and well drained as the roots are close to the house. I have mulched it  when we have had dry winters.

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