Beth Lynch

Iowa wildflower Wednesday: Witch hazel

Many thanks to Luther College Associate Professor Beth Lynch for adapting and sharing an article and photographs she first published in November 2013. I had no idea witch hazel was native to Iowa. Steve Peterson alerted me to Beth’s work and shared some of his own pictures of witch hazel blooming in Winneshiek County. I enclosed those at the end of this post. -promoted by desmoinesdem

TINY JOYS OF A BOTANIST

I write to share with you one of my tiny joys of late fall. I took this photograph during the first week of November. What is it? A twig with some leaves, right? Look again. What are those yellow stringy things hanging from the twig? Spiders? Whiskers? Look closely.

These are the bright yellow petals of the witch hazel flowers. Think about it: flowers blooming in November! Every fall when most of the leaves have dropped from the trees and the sun is weak, I look for these cheery little flowers on the witch hazels. They bring a bit of warmth to the cold dark days when I seem to need it most. Tiny joy, indeed.

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