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Uses

Edible uses

Notes

Seed - raw or cooked[1]. An oily texture[2][3][4][5]. The seeds are about the size of a barley grain and have a thick bony coat[6]. The reports of edibility must be treated with some suspicion, they all seem to stem from one questionable report in the 'Medical Flora' of Refinesque[6]. A refreshing tea is made from the leaves and twigs[3][7][4][8].

Unknown part

Tea

Material uses

Used as a rootstock for the ornamental species in this genus[9].

The plant is very rich in tannin[10]. It is used cosmetically as an ingredient in almost any preparation made to relieve capillary weaknesses[10]. The stems have been used for water divining[8].

Wood - heavy, hard, very close grained[11]. It weighs 43lb per cubic foot[12]. The trees are too small to be a useful lumber source[13].

Unknown part

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

Witch hazel bark is a traditional herb of the North American Indians who used it to heal wounds, treat tumours, eye problems etc[14]. A very astringent herb, it is commonly used in the West and is widely available from both herbalists and chemists[15]. It is an important ingredient of proprietary eye drops, skin creams, ointments and skin tonics[16]. It is widely used as an external application to bruises, sore muscles, varicose veins, haemorrhoids, sore nipples, inflammations etc[16].

The bark is astringent, haemostatic, sedative and tonic[2][17][18][19][20][15]. Tannins in the bark are believed to be responsible for its astringent and haemostatic properties[15]. Bottled witch hazel water is a steam distillate that does not contain the tannins from the shrub[15], this is less effective in its action than a tincture[16]. The bark is used internally in the treatment of diarrhoea, colitis, dysentery, haemorrhoids, vaginal discharge, excessive menstruation, internal bleeding and prolapsed organs[16]. Branches and twigs are harvested for the bark in the spring[16]. An infusion of the leaves is used to reduce inflammations, treat piles, internal haemorrhages and eye inflammations[5]. The leaves are harvested in the summer and can be dried for later use[16].

A homeopathic remedy is made from fresh bark[1]. It is used in the treatment of nosebleeds, piles and varicose veins[1].

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Ecological Functions

Rootstock

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Seed - this can be very slow to germinate. It is best to harvest the seed 'green' (as soon as it is mature but before it has dried on the plant) around the end of August and sow it immediately in a cold frame[21][22]. It may still take 18 months to germinate[23] but will normally be quicker than stored seed which will require 2 months warm stratification then 1 month cold followed by another 2 weeks warm and then a further 4 months cold stratification[24]. Scarification may also improve germination of stored seed[21]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle. Overwinter them in a greenhouse for their first winter and plant out in late spring[25].

Layering in early spring or autumn[25][23]. Takes 12 months. Good percentage[25].

Softwood cuttings, summer in a frame[23].

Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Hamamelis virginiana. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.



Cultivation

Prefers a moist sandy loam[17][26] in a sunny position[27], though it tolerates some shade[17]. Prefers a rich well-drained soil[27]. Dislikes dry limy soils but will succeed in a calcareous soil if it is moist[26]. Prefers a position sheltered from cold drying winds in a neutral to slightly acid soil[23].

A very hardy plant tolerating temperatures down to about -35°c[28]. Plants seldom produce seeds in Britain[2]. Witch hazel is a widely used medicinal herb. The bark is harvested commercially from the wild in N. America[29]. The twigs have been used in the past as dowsing rods for water divining[13]. A slow growing shrub, it takes about 6 years to flower from seed[23]. The flowers have a soft sweet perfume[30].

This species is notably susceptible to honey fungus[23].

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Hamamelis virginiana. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.

Polycultures & Guilds

There are no polycultures listed which include Hamamelis virginiana.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Hamamelis virginiana
Genus
Hamamelis
Family
Hamamelidaceae
Imported References
Material uses & Functions
Botanic
Propagation
Cultivation
Environment
Cultivation
Uses
Edible uses
None listed.
Material uses
None listed.
Medicinal uses
None listed.
Functions & Nature
Functions
Provides forage for
Provides shelter for
Environment
Hardiness Zone
5
Heat Zone
?
Water
moderate
Sun
full sun
Shade
light shade
Soil PH
Soil Texture
Soil Water Retention
Environmental Tolerances
    Ecosystems
    Native Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Adapted Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Native Geographical Range
    None listed.
    Native Environment
    None listed.
    Ecosystem Niche
    None listed.
    Root Zone Tendancy
    None listed.
    Life
    Deciduous or Evergreen
    Herbaceous or Woody
    Life Cycle
    Growth Rate
    Mature Size
    5 x 5 meters
    Fertility
    ?
    Pollinators
    ?
    Flower Colour
    ?
    Flower Type

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    "image:Hamamelis virginiana FlowersLeaves BotGardBln0906.JPG|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

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    References

    1. ? 1.01.11.21.31.4 Castro. M. The Complete Homeopathy Handbook. Macmillan. London. ISBN 0-333-55581-3 (1990-00-00)
    2. ? 2.02.12.22.32.4 Grieve. A Modern Herbal. Penguin ISBN 0-14-046-440-9 (1984-00-00)
    3. ? 3.03.13.2 Kavasch. B. Native Harvests. Vintage Books ISBN 0-394-72811-4 (1979-00-00)
    4. ? 4.04.14.2 Kunkel. G. Plants for Human Consumption. Koeltz Scientific Books ISBN 3874292169 (1984-00-00)
    5. ? 5.05.15.25.3 Weiner. M. A. Earth Medicine, Earth Food. Ballantine Books ISBN 0-449-90589-6 (1980-00-00)
    6. ? 6.06.16.2 Hedrick. U. P. Sturtevant's Edible Plants of the World. Dover Publications ISBN 0-486-20459-6 (1972-00-00)
    7. ? 7.07.1 Tanaka. T. Tanaka's Cyclopaedia of Edible Plants of the World. Keigaku Publishing (1976-00-00)
    8. ? 8.08.18.28.3 Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany Timber Press. Oregon. ISBN 0-88192-453-9 (1998-00-00)
    9. ? 9.09.1 Thomas. G. S. Ornamental Shrubs, Climbers and Bamboos. Murray ISBN 0-7195-5043-2 (1992-00-00)
    10. ? 10.010.110.2 Chiej. R. Encyclopaedia of Medicinal Plants. MacDonald ISBN 0-356-10541-5 (1984-00-00)
    11. ? 11.011.1 Sargent. C. S. Manual of the Trees of N. America. Dover Publications Inc. New York. ISBN 0-486-20278-X (1965-00-00)
    12. ? 12.012.1 Britton. N. L. Brown. A. An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States and Canada Dover Publications. New York. ISBN 0-486-22642-5 (1970-00-00)
    13. ? 13.013.113.2 Elias. T. The Complete Trees of N. America. Field Guide and Natural History. Van Nostrand Reinhold Co. ISBN 0442238622 (1980-00-00)
    14. ? 14.014.1 Chevallier. A. The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants Dorling Kindersley. London ISBN 9-780751-303148 (1996-00-00)
    15. ? 15.015.115.215.315.4 Foster. S. & Duke. J. A. A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants. Eastern and Central N. America. Houghton Mifflin Co. ISBN 0395467225 (1990-00-00)
    16. ? 16.016.116.216.316.416.516.6 Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses. Dorling Kindersley, London. ISBN 0-7513-020-31 (1995-00-00)
    17. ? 17.017.117.217.3 Holtom. J. and Hylton. W. Complete Guide to Herbs. Rodale Press ISBN 0-87857-262-7 (1979-00-00)
    18. ? 18.018.1 Lust. J. The Herb Book. Bantam books ISBN 0-553-23827-2 (1983-00-00)
    19. ? 19.019.1 Mills. S. Y. The Dictionary of Modern Herbalism. ()
    20. ? 20.020.1 Hill. A. F. Economic Botany. The Maple Press (1952-00-00)
    21. ? 21.021.1 McMillan-Browse. P. Hardy Woody Plants from Seed. Grower Books ISBN 0-901361-21-6 (1985-00-00)
    22. ? Gordon. A. G. and Rowe. D. C. f. Seed Manual for Ornamental Trees and Shrubs. ()
    23. ? 23.023.123.223.323.423.523.6 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
    24. ? Dirr. M. A. and Heuser. M. W. The Reference Manual of Woody Plant Propagation. Athens Ga. Varsity Press ISBN 0942375009 (1987-00-00)
    25. ? 25.025.125.2 Sheat. W. G. Propagation of Trees, Shrubs and Conifers. MacMillan and Co (1948-00-00)
    26. ? 26.026.1 ? The Plantsman. Vol. 4. 1982 - 1983. Royal Horticultural Society (1982-00-00)
    27. ? 27.027.1 F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
    28. ? Phillips. R. & Rix. M. Shrubs. Pan Books ISBN 0-330-30258-2 (1989-00-00)
    29. ? Usher. G. A Dictionary of Plants Used by Man. Constable ISBN 0094579202 (1974-00-00)
    30. ? Genders. R. Scented Flora of the World. Robert Hale. London. ISBN 0-7090-5440-8 (1994-00-00)
    31. ? Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named PFAFimport-11
    32. ? Fernald. M. L. Gray's Manual of Botany. American Book Co. (1950-00-00)

    "image:Hamamelis virginiana FlowersLeaves BotGardBln0906.JPG|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

    Facts about "Hamamelis virginiana"RDF feed
    Article is incompleteYes +
    Article requires citationsNo +
    Article requires cleanupYes +
    Belongs to familyHamamelidaceae +
    Belongs to genusHamamelis +
    Functions asRootstock +
    Has binomial nameHamamelis virginiana +
    Has common nameWitch Hazel +
    Has drought toleranceIntolerant +
    Has edible partSeed + and Unknown part +
    Has edible useUnknown use + and Tea +
    Has flowers of typeHermaphrodite +
    Has growth rateSlow +
    Has hardiness zone5 +
    Has imageHamamelis virginiana FlowersLeaves BotGardBln0906.JPG +
    Has lifecycle typePerennial +
    Has material partUnknown part +
    Has material useCosmetic +, Tannin + and Wood +
    Has mature height5 +
    Has mature width5 +
    Has medicinal partUnknown part +
    Has medicinal useAstringent +, Haemostatic +, Homeopathy +, Sedative + and Tonic +
    Has primary imageHamamelis virginiana FlowersLeaves BotGardBln0906.JPG +
    Has search namehamamelis virginiana + and witch hazel +
    Has shade toleranceLight shade +
    Has soil ph preferenceAcid +, Neutral + and Alkaline +
    Has soil texture preferenceSandy + and Loamy +
    Has soil water retention preferenceWell drained +
    Has sun preferenceFull sun +
    Has taxonomic rankSpecies +
    Has taxonomy nameHamamelis virginiana +
    Has water requirementsmoderate +
    Is deciduous or evergreenDeciduous +
    Is herbaceous or woodyWoody +
    Is taxonomy typeSpecies +
    PFAF cultivation notes migratedNo +
    PFAF edible use notes migratedNo +
    PFAF material use notes migratedNo +
    PFAF medicinal use notes migratedNo +
    PFAF propagation notes migratedNo +
    PFAF toxicity notes migratedYes +
    Tolerates nutritionally poor soilNo +
    Uses mature size measurement unitMeters +
    Has subobjectThis property is a special property in this wiki.Hamamelis virginiana +, Hamamelis virginiana +, Hamamelis virginiana +, Hamamelis virginiana +, Hamamelis virginiana +, Hamamelis virginiana +, Hamamelis virginiana +, Hamamelis virginiana +, Hamamelis virginiana + and Hamamelis virginiana +