Hazel: The ultimate early bloomer
The male hazel flowers
are opening up, both on wild hazelnuts and on the hybrids in our yard.
Finally, a good source of pollen for the honeybees who have been
unusually busy during this warm winter weather!
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The bush pictured at the top
of this post is an unnamed
hybrid from the Arbor Day Foundation. But, in the background, next
generation named hybrids look like they might produce female
flowers this year.
It's unusual for a plant to commit to female flowers before it makes
the energetically cheaper males. But when I dissected one of the plump
pink buds on the catkin-less plants I'm pretty sure I found stigmas
(female flower parts) buried deep inside. I guess I'll just have to
wait and see what these buds turn into. Maybe tasty nuts with thinner