Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Witch Hazel
Hamamelis x intermedia 'Arnold Promise'

Family: Hamamelidaceae
Genus: Hamamelis (ham-uh-MEE-lis) (Info)
Species: x intermedia (in-ter-MEE-dee-a) (Info)
Cultivar: Arnold Promise

One vendor has this plant for sale.

5 members have or want this plant for trade.


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)
4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:
Light Shade


Bloom Color:
Bright Yellow

Bloom Time:
Late Winter/Early Spring
Mid Winter

Good Fall Color

Other details:
Flowers are fragrant
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Provides winter interest

Soil pH requirements:
5.1 to 5.5 (strongly acidic)
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
By grafting

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

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Thumbnail #7 of Hamamelis x intermedia by ViburnumValley

There are a total of 17 photos.
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9 positives
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive Sequoiadendron4 On May 14, 2014, Sequoiadendron4 from Lititz, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:

Beautiful yellow flowers beginning in mid February in warm years and mid March in cold years. Blooms last about a month or so. One of the best smelling blooms in our yard. I love the smell and frequently put my nose up to the flowers to take a whiff. Grows at a moderate pace and I'm expecting this shrub to become quite large. Leaves turn a magnificent yellow in the fall. Our specimen gets sun until mid afternoon and it seems happy.

Positive coriaceous On Feb 11, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

A consistently good bloomer, and the latest of the witch hazels to bloom. It starts to bloom in late winter, though when exactly varies considerably from year to year, and it stays in bloom for a little over a month.

Large fragrant flowers, a clear bright lemon yellow. Blooms best in full sun, but partial shade is good, too. Fall color is best in full sun.

This is a small tree rather than a shrub, usually reaching 15-20'. It has a beautiful natural vase shape and herringbone branching pattern that are easily destroyed by pruning. Heavily pruned plants do not flower well. It's best placed where its natural form and size will be assets.

Though cuttings root easily, this tree is usually only available grafted onto H. virginiana roots. Own-root plants are much more desirable, as grafted plants sucker a great deal and suckers need to be pruned off frequently if the rootstock isn't to outgrow the cultivar. (You can recognize the H. virginiana suckers because they retain their browned leaves into the winter.)

Positive Gewissjohn On Mar 4, 2013, Gewissjohn from Acton, MA wrote:

Seemed slow to establish; profuse suckering but no disease issues. Takes drought once established. Nice fall color but spring blooms adversely affected by late season drought. Seems to be partial to acidic soil.

Neutral Jonis On Feb 15, 2013, Jonis from Seattle, WA wrote:

My Arnold's Promise has been living in a pot for 4-5 years here in Seattle. Last week (early Feb) two blooms appeared, and that's all. What's the problem? Can I expect more, or is that it for this year?

Thanks for any guidance.

P.S. I bought the plant at Swanson's Nursery in the hope of winter fragrance, but it has never been fragrant at all.

Positive gelillc On Jan 29, 2012, gelillc from Clarkston, MI wrote:

this is a spectacular specimen plant ..When planted was apprx 4 ft 10 years ago and now is apprx 10 by 10
Beautiful intense yellow flowers and gourgeous fall foilage

I have pics that I could share but I do not think they will let you post them on here ?

Positive rkwright85 On Jun 21, 2010, rkwright85 from Horton, MI (Zone 5b) wrote:

Does better than Hamamelis vernalis here. Even after a mild winter, H. vernalis doesn't flower well but this one is pretty reliable.

Positive Rarejem On Jan 18, 2010, Rarejem from (Julie)South Prairie, WA (Zone 7a) wrote:

Arnold Promise was the first variety of Witch Hazel that I added to my garden, and it had me hooked on it's beautiful form and early splash of color from the first year. I would question the 4'-6' height listing though, as I have had to prune twice a year to keep mine at 6'. I really wish I had planted it somewhere else where I could let it grow to it's heart's content. I would not describe It's fragrance as "sweet", but is nice and I can smell it from 20' away when it is at is prime. This is one plant that I will definitely never be without.

Positive ViburnumValley On Mar 9, 2008, ViburnumValley from Scott County, KY (Zone 5b) wrote:

'Arnold Promise' witch hazel is the first of this fine species that I had the pleasure to become acquainted with (and plant for myself) back in the 1980s.

I have enjoyed this large-growing shrub to small tree sized plant and its copious late winter and early spring fragrant bright yellow blooms. The only downside to 'Arnold Promise' performance is that it often overlaps in bloom time with the ubiquitous forsythia around central KY. Given the choice, most gardeners know what a forsythia is, and nurseries will sell them a thousand to each one witch hazel.

This is a fine plant, but it is rapidly being superceded by newer selections that bloom earlier in the winter when there is little to no competition.

Positive springrunfarm On Jan 2, 2008, springrunfarm from Coatesville, PA wrote:

I look forward to the late winter flowers every year! Blooms around Mid February around here-sometimes a bit earlier, and lasts about 4 weeks.

Neutral mystic On Sep 25, 2006, mystic from Ewing, KY (Zone 6a) wrote:

Received The Royal Horticultural Society, Award of Garden Merit (AGM) in 2005.

Positive Todd_Boland On Nov 22, 2004, Todd_Boland from St. John's, NL (Zone 5b) wrote:

This is probably the most well known witch hazel and rightly so; the flowers are among the largest of the witch hazels and are a brilliant yellow. It was a selection made at the Arnold Arboretum, Mass., in 1963. This cultivar also has excellent fall colour.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Vincent, Alabama
Little Rock, Arkansas
Decatur, Georgia
Clermont, Kentucky
Georgetown, Kentucky
Lexington, Kentucky
Louisville, Kentucky
Silver Spring, Maryland
Acton, Massachusetts
Pembroke, Massachusetts
Roslindale, Massachusetts
Spencer, Massachusetts
Clarkston, Michigan
Dearborn Heights, Michigan
Horton, Michigan
Saint Joseph, Missouri
Scotch Plains, New Jersey
Roslyn, New York
Winston Salem, North Carolina
Corvallis, Oregon
Berwyn, Pennsylvania
Coatesville, Pennsylvania
Lititz, Pennsylvania
Farmington, Utah
East Port Orchard, Washington
Edison, Washington
Seattle, Washington
South Prairie, Washington

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