Hellebores are sometimes known as the Christmas or Lenten rose. They are perennial garden plants with elegant flowers, perfect for brightening up shady areas during late winter and early spring. Some species are grown for their striking evergreen architectural foliage.
The flowers of many Hellebores are often hidden by the large leaves, so to make sure they can be seen clearly, remove the old leaves on stemless types in late winter or early spring as the flower buds emerge.
How To Grow
- Hellebores prefer to grow in rich, well-drained soil in dappled shade. Avoid planting in very dry or waterlogged soil.
- Provide shelter from strong, cold winds.
- Water during dry spells and mulch annually with leaf mould, chipped bark or other organic matter in autumn.
- Apply a general-purpose fertiliser, such as growmore or fish, blood & bone, in spring.
- Container grown plants can be fed with balanced liquid fertiliser, or with a high potassium fertiliser such as tomato feed, to encourage blooms.
One of the problems with Hellebore or Christmas rose in cold climates is the belief they are evergreen in all areas, but in cold climates the leaves will die over the winter.
Prune them off, the last thing in the Autumn, well after frost but before any snow arrives.
In the spring, the new flowers and leaves pop up, unhindered – basically if you don’t prune them in Autumn you will have to prune them in the Spring.