Saturday, February 19, 2011


On a woodland slope in Central Park one of my favorite late winter bloomers is once again coming to life. Hamamelis vernalis is commonly called winter witchhazel, a fabulous medium-sized native shrub and the latest of the North American Hamamelis species to bloom.

Every year I seem to take the same shots of these first shrubs and bulbs to throw some color into the late winter landscape. And so as I was approaching my reliable friend for the "hort porn" macro shots I thought to myself, "how can I change it up this year and make these more interesting". Not that the shrub and it's unique spidery flowers aren't amazing in their own right, but you might know what I'm talking about. Well, luckily for me nature stepped in and decided to rock my world. Bees!

As I sniffed the medicinal fragrance that I have come to love about this plant I heard the buzzing. Pulling back I realized the witchhazel was loaded with bees doing their wild dance among the clusters of yellow and maroon flowers. The first bee sighting of the year my focus quickly shifted to these magnificent little pollinators. A few great shots came from the series. Remember, the more native species you incorporate into your garden the more you also support and provide for local bird and insect populations, all good things.

Enjoy, and Happy Almost Spring!

I think this one might take the cake:
(love the sun glowing through the bee's abdomen!)
For more info on Hamamelis visit last years post here.

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