Corylus avellana 'Contorta'

3 litre pot £37.99
available to order from autumn
Quantity 1 Plus Minus
Buy Corylus avellana 'Contorta' corkscrew hazel: Unusual twisted stems

This shrub is deciduous so it will lose all its leaves in autumn, then fresh new foliage appears again each spring.

  • Position: full sun or partial shade
  • Soil: fertile, well-drained, preferably chalky soil
  • Rate of growth: slow-growing
  • Flowering period: February to March
  • Hardiness: fully hardy

    In February and March, the bizarrely contorted stems of this small hazel are draped with golden-yellow catkins. The leaves, which are mid-green and twisted, appear later. This corkscrew hazel is ideal for the middle of a sunny border, where its winter outline can be fully appreciated, or planted in large containers. The twisted stems, much-valued by flower-arrangers, also provide a curious and unusual focal point for an oriental-style garden.

  • Garden care: Cut out dead, diseased and damaged wood in March and apply a 5-7cm (2-3in) mulch of well-rotted organic matter around the base of the plant.

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Eventual height & spread

Eventual height and spread
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I would buy from Crocus again


Gives patio interest.




Poor choice by me


Slow growing. Disappointingly new branches not twisted but straight! Possibly planted in dry bed!





4.0 2


Why has my corkscrew hazels leaves gone all limp?


Hello, The leaves of this cultivar do look weeping and slightly crumpled, but to be on safe side, do make sure it is getting sufficient water.


Hello, would you please let me know if it is possible to move a corkscrew hazel successfully? Mine is now about 6 feet tall and i have had it for about 6 years. It has thrived where it is growing but i now need to move it if possible. Thank you.

garden crazy

Hello there The best time to move a deciduous shrub is when it is dormant, say between October to March but even so when it is an established plant like this Corylus there is a degree of risk.

What is the root spread of this plant. The soil is rather heavy but fertile

Bee walk

Hello, Root systems tend to be more compact in heavier soils, however as a very general rule, the root system of a plant will roughly mirror the size of the top growth.


how to treat whitefly on contorta avellana


Hello there Aphids are a common pest but they can be treated in several ways. The organic path is trying to encourage natural predators into your garden, -ladybirds, lacewings and hoverflies. We sell various ladybird and lacewing 'homes' to try and encourage them into your garden. Then there is the biological control, where you can buy the live ladybirds or lacewing larvae to eat the aphids. I have attached a link below to this. Or alternatively it is the chemical route which is spraying with a suitable contact or systemic insecticide. Hope this helps

Hi what size of pot should i plant my hazel contorta in please


Hello, These are not the fastest growers, but they do get reasonably big over time. With this in mind, you have two options. You can either pot it up in stages every couple of years (a 30cm pot would be a good starting point), or you can pot it straight into its permanent home, which should be at least 60 x 60cm.


Plant advice for 2 new beds please Hello, I need some help to decide which plants to put into two new areas please:- 1: A semi-circle flash bed at the front of the house, size approx 2m x 0.80m and 0.80m deep. I thought about the 3 following options for a small tree/bush in the middle:- a) Magnolia soulangeana, but I was worried about the size that it could grow to and possible problems with roots etc . Will it stay small if the size of the container is used to restrict it? b) Witch Hazel (Hamamelis intermediana 'Diane'). Will it spread too much? I think this is very pretty. c) Corylus avellana 'contorta' Then I also need to think about ground cover plants to help suppress weeds. I am only interested in fully hardy, easy to look after plants, could be with some flowers or coloured leaves. 2:- A thin path between neighbours (approx 2m x 0.40). My idea is to plant bamboo. I would love a modern thin run of bamboo with ground cover. My worry is which bamboos to use. I love the yellow, like Phyllostychys aureocaulis (Golden Grove) but not sure if it is strong enough as it could be exposed to some wind. I bought from you a couple of years ago the Phyllostychys aureosulcata 'Spectabilis' which I planted in pots but it died this year. I see on your website some other bamboos but I don't like them as much as their canes seems less exposed and have a lot more foliage. But possibly these would be a better alternative... ...? For the ground cover I as thinking of Ophiopogen nigrescen. Do you think these plants will be suitable, or have you any other suggestions? Thank you for your help, Galia

e moran

Hello Galia, All of the taller shrubs you mentioned for the semi-circular bed will get quite large, but their growth will be restricted (both in height and spread) if they are kept in a pot where their roots are restricted. For groundcover you could opt for any of the following:- Bergenia Helleborus Heuchera Epimedium Geranium Erica As for the bamboos, even the most well behaved one (Fargesia murieliae) will spread to around 1.5m across so you should keep this in mind when planting it in such a confined space. Perhaps a better option would be one of our hedging plants, which can be cut back hard against the wall. Taxus or Ligustrum would be good options. I hope this helps. Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

Winter flowering shrubs and climbers to plant with new hedge Hello, I have newly planted a hedge (made up from Hornbeam, Rosa rugosa, Blackthorn, Cornus, Hawthorn and Hazel) about 50ft long. I have been told that if I was to plant amongst the hedge some winter flowering Clematis such as 'Wisley Cream' it would give some nice colour these bleak winter months when the hedge is bare of foliage. The hedge is south facing and although the ground is ???good??? heavy Cambridgeshire clay the hedge has been planted in a trench back filled with leaf mulch, chipped wood and spent peat. Although I have said about in-planting Clematis in the hedge, I am open to other plant suggestions if you have any. Regards Terry

Terry Allum

Hello Terry, If you click on the following link it will take you to all our winter flowering climbers - of which the Jasminum is tougher and more like a shrub. Alternatively, this link will take you to all our winter flowering shrubs. I hope this helps. Helen Plant Doctor

Crocus Helpdesk

How do I prune my contorted hazel? We inherited a contorted hazelnut tree from the previous owners of our house. While it is beautiful, its growing pretty rapidly and there's no light underneath. Can you give me some pruning tips please?

Vicky Navagh

If you want to re-vamp your hazel, then you can cut back all the stems to within 2 or 3 buds from the base in early spring. Alternatively, if you dont want to take such drastic action, you can cut back some stems to relieve congestion and leave some remaining, and then remove any lower branches that are creating a tangle back to the main trunk. This should also be tackled in early spring.


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