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If you are cutting branches to force, choose a day that the temperature is above freezing because the branches will be more pliable. You will want to choose branches that have round plump buds (leaf buds are usually more pointed). (Pixabay)
The flower structure of some plants such as pussy willow, hazel, and birch are called catkins. These structures are covering in a furry, silky covering that will soon develop into the reproductive stage. (Pixabay)
Although witch hazel flowers can appear rather early, their presence usually heralds the end of winter. These interesting, frilly flowers can withstand cold temperatures and you will often see them peeking out from under snow cover. (Pixabay)