Buttercup winterhazel (Corylopsis pauciflora)

What blooms earlier than forsythia, has a delicate fragrance and is an easy-to-care for  compact delight ?  That is also hardy to USDA Zones 6-9 and native to Japan and Taiwan?

Photo by Richie Steffen - Great Plant Picks

Buttercup winterhazel  (Corylopsis pauciflora) 

Toward mid April (depending where you live), the bare branches of buttercup winterhazel hang with inch-long clusters of soft yellow flowers that appear as little lanterns.  The fragrance is noticeable, making it perfect near a sitting spot. 

 It was awarded the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit (AGM) in 1993. 

Missouri Botanical Garden photo

Winterhazel is good in a small city garden or as a woodland underplanting in open shade. 

It glows in front of evergreens and is a perfect pairing with purple Rhododendron mucronulatum since they flower at the exact same time. 

And winterhazels look wonderful with snowdrops and hellebores! 

Portland Nursery photo

As the flowers fade, the leaves unfurl to 3 inches long, bright green with red edges before darkening to rich green. In fall they turn a gold-bronze.

buttercup winter hazel Corylopsis pauciflora Fall foliage
photo by Eric Larson

This species is compact and is the ideal choice for a small garden. 

 Plant in spring, in  well-drained, acid soil, in a spot with light or dappled shade. It will tolerate full sun with regular watering in the summer. It needs little pruning.

Corylopsis pauciflora (buttercup winter hazel) foliage close up
winterhazel fall color - photo by Eric Larson

C. pauciflora can be hard to find, but well stocked nurseries will carry it. Look for it in Spring! 


Post a Comment

Hi there! I would love to hear from you....

Popular Posts of all Time

Angelface Blue and Dark Violet Angelonia - a Flower that Keeps Giving

'Purple Smoke' - The best Baptisia

Getting in the 'Flow' by Gardening

No-Fail Tips for Turning Hydrangeas Blue!

Repurposed and Recycled - Creative Ideas for Garden Design

Planting Design for Dry Gardens by Olivier Filippi

The Magnificent Purslane - Edible Landscaping at its best!

My one day Class Wednesday April 16 in NY - Jan Johnsen

The Tradition of Hanami - Cherry Blossom Viewing in Japan