The hazel bush is widespread, everyone knows the plant, but it is also easily overlooked. Yet the hazel is an ancient crop in our region and a real asset for insects and birds. It is a wonderful garden plant with many benefits.
The hazel shrub, also called common hazel or wood hazel, belongs to the birch family. It comes with green or red leaves. Ideally, the best time for planting is autumn and early spring. Less suitable is the time while the shrub is growing and sprouting.
We picked up another wood hazel (Corylus avellana) from a nursery this spring to add to our hedge. Once it grows properly and sprouts more vigorously, it can easily be pruned again and again into the appropriate shape. The shrubs grow 5 to 7 meters high and provide good privacy.
In addition, there is the hazel tree, also known as tree hazel or Turkish hazel, which is less common in our latitudes. If you buy a young hazel plant, pay attention to the name when buying or look at the variety, because the tree can grow over 15 meters high.
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Hazelnut bush – the right location.
When planting in the fall, protect the roots of young plants against frost, the smaller bushes do not yet tolerate the cold so well. Otherwise, the hazelnut bush is undemanding and easy to care for. It prefers sun as well as partial shade and likes it warm. The soil should be well-drained and rich in humus, it is less fond of standing moist and compacted or in the wind.
Since the hazelnut is not a self-pollinator, ideally put two or more plants. Flowering time is March and April, grafted bushes bear nuts from the second to third year, they can be harvested in September and October.
The plant has both male and female flowers. The male ones are the highly visible, drooping catkins that grow up to 10 centimeters long and already offer pollen to insects in spring. The female flowers are red and resemble a small bud – they are much more inconspicuous.
Prune the shrub regularly
The shrub grows slowly at the beginning. But once it is properly grown and rooted, it quickly forms new shoots and grows up quickly the next year. The advantage is that the hazelnut is very easy to trim. Even hard cuts on larger branches and trunks it forgives, soon new shoots grow laterally just below the cut marks. In this respect, the plant usually develops many stems, new shoots quickly grow vertically upwards towards the light.
Thinning out the regrowing shoots can give you supplies for straight woody stems if you need them in the bed or garden. So cut back generously, ideal time for this is fall, so it stays a bush and doesn’t become a tree. Otherwise, the shade in the garden increases more and more.
Can be used very well for hedges and as a screen.
In this respect, the hazel is excellent as a hedge plant, but also as a screen and shade. When planting, plan enough space in the medium term or cut it back consistently. It is not so easy to completely dig out the shrub after a few years, it also likes to sprout new canes near the ground.
The hazel bush is an ancient cultivated plant.
Besides, hazelnuts can be harvested in autumn, of course. The hazelnut bush is a millennia-old cultivated plant, in literature it is often said to have special powers, and it is known as a medicinal plant anyway. Not only the fruits are used for this purpose. Among other things, the plant is considered hemostatic, blood purifying and antipyretic. The nuts are widely used in food, they are healthy and nutritious. Raw from the tree they also taste good, but not all people tolerate them, some have allergic reactions.
A shrub for domestic animals
The hazelnut also provides a valuable contribution to wildlife in our gardens. It blooms early in the spring, providing valuable pollen for bees and other insects. Birds, squirrels, dormice and other animals benefit from the nuts in the fall. Even the leaves provide food for some insects. In short, in a varied natural garden, the plant can not be missing.
I have 30 years of experience and i started this website to see if i could try and share my knowledge to help you.
With a degree a Horticulture BSc (Hons)
I have worked as a horticulture specialist lead gardener, garden landscaper, and of course i am a hobby gardener at home in my own garden.
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