Hellebores – The Winter Flower
At a time when all around us nature seems to sleep, the winter flowers of helleborus bring life and hope to gardens, bursting forth from hardened ground with resilient, persistent blooms. These hardy, low-maintenance perennials have a long-standing flowering period and can withstand severe cold and snow. Mainly evergreen with strong, sculpted leaves, their flower colours range from white to yellow, pink to purple.
Because Hellebores flower in December and early spring they are excellent pollinators, attracting bees waking from their winter sleep.
Care tips: Hellebores will grow without any care at all provided the area around them is kept weed-free. They can be hungry though, and a good helping of fish, blood and bone in March and September will give them a bountiful boost. To avoid the onset of fungal diseases, keep air circulating around the base of the plant by removing any dead or dying leaves in Late Nov/Dec and as the flowers die down in March/Apr cut the dead stems away for the same reason.
Here at Rutland Garden Centre we are currently stocking eight different varieties of Hellebores:
Helleborus Lividus Green Marble an easy care, compact plant with delicate, very pale green flowers that contrast beautifully with its dark evergreen leaves
Helleborus Sternii a clump-forming hybrid evergreen perennial combiningthe leaf and winter tolerance of the Argutifolius and the compactness and flower-type of the Lividus
Helleborus ‘Christmas Carol’ a stunning plant producing large white flowers over the festive season and into the New Year
Helleborus ViV ‘Victoria’ an exceptionally durable and long-blooming cultivar with purple flowers and glossy, dark, evergreen foliage
Helleborus Foetidus an elegant, spring flowering hellebore with drooping lime green flowers held above the tops of the foliage
Helleborus Winterbells one of the earliest and longest flowering hellebore with beautiful, cup-shaped pink and white flowers
Helleborus Argutifolis flowers the colour of ‘Granny Smith’ apples contrast with the spiky evergreen foliage
Helleborus Walbertons Ivory Prince a branching, evergreen perennial with blue-green foliage and distinctive veining. From late winter through mid-spring, burgundy-pink buds open to ivory flowers which become streaked with rose as they age.
Trivia: Hellebores are part of the Ranunculaceae (meaning little frog) family along with buttercups, delphinium and clematis