Witch hazels (Hamamelis virginiana and others) are a group of deciduous late winter or early spring flowering understory shrubs. The yellow, red, or orange flowers (depending of species, cultivar or hybrid) are a cheery addition to the garden at a time when not much else is blooming.
Seed dispersal can be explosive (literally exploding off the plant), but the question of pollination remains – how does a flower get pollinated when it is too cold for pollinators to be around? A partial answer: Owlet moths visit the flowers during the evenings on chilly nights. These moths have developed a thermoregulation technique similar to a human behavior – shivering. This shivering is an incredibly fast wing vibration that raises their body temperature enough for them to fly. Pollination occurs and seeds are dispersed in the spring.