Friday, February 10, 2017

Hello Hellebores

This plant is for any gardener who watches impatiently for the first signs of spring. I hate the gray winter skies and as any one who follows me knows, I hate the winter. So I think this plant was sent by the “plant ruler” to keep me from being such a winter “bitch”. 

Hellebore, what about this plant is not to love? Basically, the big broad leaves are green in my garden all winter long and the blooms start emerging in January or maybe a little later depending on winter weather conditions. 

I started with several plants and now have two large clumps. They spread so happily, and can be easily divided in the spring, after the blooms are done. These plants seem to do best on the edges of my shade garden, where they receive filtered sunlight. But they do great with no more than a few hours of dappled light  but seem to do ok in deep shade as well. This makes them great candidates for growing under deciduous trees or scattered in a woodland scene. 
Once established little care is needed. I remove the dead or damaged leaves  on a warm December Day, and that is about it. This plant is deer resistant and actually is poisonous so keep children and pets at bay. 
There are so many varieties, especially since their popularity has increased. Colors of the blooms are varied from white and black. They are long lasting and very fragrant. ‘Hellebores orientalis ‘ is among the earliest of winter bloomers and the wides selection of colors. 

So plant this plant in your shade garden for a lovely late winter surprise, I bet it will help your mood as it does mine. 

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