Thursday, March 25, 2010

Helleborus

A family of mostly evergreen perennials with lance shape toothed leaflets that are often leathery. The long lasting cold resistant flowers are borne in winter to early spring.
All parts of the plant are very poisonous. Good in shade or partial shade with many species making an excellent groundcover. Helleborus are DEER RESISTANT!
Slow to establish first 2 years; vigorous after that however the wait is well worth it on these very long lived plants featuring showy blooms and excellent foliage.
Easy to grow; the Helleboris and Cephalotaxus are about a tie for the lowest losses of any plant I've used in landscaping with a near 100% long term survival rate.
Most species are most vigorous on moist, fertile, humus-rich, well drained soil with a PH over 6.5.
In cold climates without reliable snowcover, it is recommended to mulch to protect the roots during winter. Doe not fertilize during summer, the roots are sensitive to fertilizer burn at any time. It is more important to keep the root system shaded and cool during summer to promote root development. All species grow more vigorously if deadheaded immediately after blooming, with old flower stalks cut to the ground ( be careful not to damage newly emerging foliage ).
Species easy to grow from seed, cultivars do not come true from seed.
Helleborus(s) can be divided immediately after blooming during spring.




Helleboris abchasicus
Native to the Caucasus and reaching up to 20 x 20 inches. This Helleborus has early drooping purple-red flowers up to 3.2 inches in size.

Helleborus antiquorum
Reaching up to 1 x 1 foot; this Helleborus has late. red-purple flowers that are green at the base and are up to 2.3 inches in size.

Helleborus argutifolius ( Corsican Helleborus )

Reaching up to 4 x 4 ( rarely over 2.5 ) feet with evergreen foliage divided into glossy dark green, leathery, Holly like spiny margined leaflets up to 8 inches long. It is native to Sardinia and Corsica.
The pendulous winter to early spring flowers, up to 2 inches wide, are very light green sometimes streaked purple.
Looks great with Polystichum ferns.
and hardy zones 6 to 9 in sun to partial shade. Prefers dryish neutral, well drained soils.

* photo taken on May 16 2011 in Washington, D.C.

* photo taken on Sep 6 2012 in Harford Co., MD

* photos taken @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014


'Janet Starnes' ( Speckled Corsican Helleborus )
Foliage is speckled creamy-white; otherwise identical.

* photos taken on Aug 1 2013 in Stratford, Ontario


'Pacific Frost'
Deep green foliage is heavily speckled white; otherwise similar to species.

* photo taken on May 3 2014 in Baltimore Co., MD



Helleborus atrorubens

Also called Helleborus dumetorium subsp atrorubens. A clumping perennial, reaching up to 20 x 20 inches, that is native to southeastern Europe ( only in northwest Yugoslavia ). The leathery shiny foliage is evergreen only in mild climates. The leaves, up to 10 inches across, are deep green, often with a purplish tint. They are composed of 7 to 11 segments.
The very early dark-violet flowers are up to 2 inches across. They are borne late winter to mid-spring.
Hardy zones 4 + in partial shade, it is very heat tolerant.

Helleborus x ballardiae

'Merlin'
Very vigorous, forming a clump up to 1.3 x 2.5 feet in size.
The very attractive foliage is glossy very deep green with bright green veins.
The very abundant flowers are bright pink at first, later deepening to deep dusky-pink.
Hardy zones 5 to 8.

* photo taken on Apr 24 2015 in Elkridge, MD
'Pink Frost'
The very vigorous hybrid between H. niger x H. lividus. Reaches up to 2 x 3 ( rarely over 1.5 x 2 ) feet, with burgundy-red stems bearing deep blue-green foliage that is boldly veined silver.
The very abundant flowers, up to 3 inches across, borne late winter into mid spring, are deep red in bud, opening to pinkish-white then later fading back to deep red.
Hardy zones 5 to 9 in partial to full shade.

* photos taken on Mar 16 2012 in Columbia, MD











* photos taken on May 14 2012 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Mar 15 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on May 20 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on June 18 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on July 15 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on May 2 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Mar 1 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Mar 14 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Apr 1 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 27 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on July 26 2017 in Columbia, MD


'Spring Party'
Forms a vigorous evergreen clump, reaching up to 1.5 x 2 feet.
The attractive foliage is green with silvery-white marbling and veins.
The huge, creamy-white flowers, up to 3 inches across, are borne late winter into mid spring.
Hardy zones 6 to 9 ( 5 on protected sites ). It is not as heat tolerant as many other Helleborus(s).

* photo taken on Mar 20 2013 in Columbia, MD


Helleborus cyclophyllus ( Grecian Helleborus )

Native to Albania, Greece, Yugoslavia & Bulgaria and reaching up to 2 x 2 feet.
Foliage is deciduous with up to 9 ovate, conspicuously-veined leaflets with lobed and finely-toothed margins. The leathery foliage is bright green. The entire leaf is up to 12 inches wide.
The bright golden-green flowers up to 3 inches wide, are borne from January to April depending on climate.
Hardy zones 6 to 9 in sun or partial shade, it is easy to grow. Very heat tolerant once established and best in dryish neutral soil.

Helleborus x ericsmithii 'Winter's Bliss'
Also called 'HGC Winter Bliss'. It is a hybrid between Helleborus niger and Helleborus x sternii.
Forms an evergreen clump, reaching up to 1.5 x 2 feet, bearing large, singe flowers that are creamy-white above, deep pink on the reverse.
The abundant flowers are borne late winter into early spring. The foliage is rich, glossy, deep blue-green.
Hardy zones 4 to 8.

* photos taken on Apr 6 2013 in Columbia, MD


Helleborus foetidus ( Stinking Helleborus )

Native to Europe ( England to Germany & south to the Mediterranean ) and rapid growing reaching up to 3 x 4 feet in size. The leaves are evergreen, shiny black-green, up to 10 inches in size and are made of 7 to 13 leathery, narrow, toothed leaflets. The pale green edged maroon drooping flowers borne in March ( December to April depending on climate ) are up to 2 inches across.
Hardy zones 4 to 9 in and heat tolerant.
Grows well in partial shade ( full shade also under deciduous trees ).
May become deciduous in severe winters.

* photos taken on May 8 2010 @ McCrillis Gardens, Bethesda, MD




* photos taken on May 16 2010 @ Cylburn Arboretum, Baltimore, MD


* photo taken on 4th of July 2010 in Washington, D.C.

* photo taken on Mar 7 2013 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD
* photo taken on May 7 2014 @ London Town Gardens, Edgewater, MD

* photo taken @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photos taken on Mar 18 2017 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD


'Bowles Form'
Larger more vigorous plant with more finely divided foliage.

'Green Giant'
Taller plant up to 5 feet with extremely dark green to almost black foliage.

'Italian Form'
Like Bowles Form but with more flowers.

'Picadilly' ( Bearclaw Helleboris )
Foliage is dark black-green with grayish overlay. Flowerstalks tinged red.
Hardy north to zone 3.

* photo taken on Mar 23 2011 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD

* photo taken on Mar 7 2013 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD

'Ruth'
Dark green deeply cut foliage turning to red in autumn.

'Sienna'
Darker green foliage.

'Sopron'
Metallic glossy green foliage.
It grows very large, larger than regular Helleborus foetidus.

'Tros-os-Montes'
Deeply serrated leaflets and green flowers.

Helleborus 'Ivory Prince'
An evergreen hybrid reaching up to 1.5 x 2.5 feet with attractive blue-green foliage and white ( with rose-pink streaks ) flowers borne late winter into early spring. Extremely heavy flowering, a single plant may bear over 80 flowers at a time.
Hardy zones 5 to 9 ( reports of 4 ) in partial to full shade.

* photos taken on May 7 2012 in Baltimore, MD


* photo taken on Sep 14 2012 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 13 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on May 8 2013 in Baltimore, MD
* photos taken on May 20 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Aug 1 2013 in Stratford, Ontario
* photo taken on July 18 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on May 27 2017 @ Meadowlark Botanical Gardens, Vienna, VA


Helleborus lividus
Rapid growing, reaching up to 40 inches x 3 feet in size.
The leathery foliage is evergreen and is divided into glossy deep green leathery leaflets that are veined gray.
The drooping flowers are up to 2.3 inches in size and are flushed pink outside, green inside.
They are borne from December to April depending on climate.
Heat tolerant and hardy from zone 6 to 9

subsp 'corsicus' ( Corsican Helleborus )
Native to the Mediterranean and reaching up to 3 x 3 feet. The grayish leaves are up to 12 inches in length with 3 leaflets.
The flowers are yellowish-green and drooping in March.

Helleboris multifidus
Native to Albania, Yugoslavia and Italy; this Helleboris forms a clump to 20 x 32 inches in size. Its main feature is its finely-dissected, blackish-green, evergreen foliage. The leaves, up to 17 inches wide, are composed of 5 to 7 leaflets.
The green, nodding flowers, up to 2.3 inches wide, are borne during early to mid spring.
Hardy zones 4 to 8 in partial to full shade. It is clay and alkaline soil tolerant.

Helleborus 'Molly's White'
Forms a very vigorous clump up to 18 x 28 inches in size.
The attractive foliage is deep green and heavily veined silver.
The abundant, pure white flowers appear mid-winter to mid-spring.
Hardy zones 5 to 8.

* photos taken on Sep 17 2017 in Columbia, MD


Helleborus niger ( Christmas Rose )
Native to mountain forests of central and southern Europe; this Helleboris forms a rapid growing clump to 2 x 4 feet in size.
The leathery, glossy deep green, evergreen leaves up to 12 inches across and are divided into 5 to 9 toothed leaflets.
The white to pinkish-white, nodding flowers, up to 4 inches wide, are borne from January to March. It sometimes blooms under the snow.
Hardy from zones 3 to 6 ( protected site in 3 & 4 ) and hates hot summers or excessive winter wind. Likes deciduous woodland shade on deep, limey to neutral, dryish, well drained loamy soil. Can be slow to established but well worth it.

* photo taken on March 2010 @ U.S. National Arboretum

* photos taken on May 8 2010 @ McCrillis Gardens, Bethesda, MD

* photo taken @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photo taken on May 27 2017 @ Meadowlark Botanical Gardens, Vienna, VA

* historic archive photos


'Blackthorn Group'
Tall and vigorous with black stems. Flowers are pink in bud opening to white then fading to pink.
* photo taken on Mar 19 2013 in Columbia, MD


'Foliis Variegatis'
foliage variegated with cream in spring.

'Jacob'

* photo taken on May 1 2014 in Columbia, MD


'HGC Josef Lemper'
Reaches up to 1.5 x 2 feet, with upright stems bearing huge, pure white flowers, up to 3.5 inches across, all winter long. The foliage is deep green.

* photos taken on April 15 2012 in Ellicott City, MD



* photo taken on Jan 14 2013 in Ellicott City, MD

* photos taken on Mar 18 2017 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD

* photo taken on Apr 23 2017 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD


'Lewis Corbett'
Flowers rose pink outside and blush pink inside.

subsp 'macranthus'
Huge flowers white tinted rose purple outside are up to 5 inches across.

'Maximus'
Reaching up to 2 feet with huge white flowers up to 5 inches across.
Hardy north to zone 3.

'Potters Wheel'
Very dark green foliage. The white flowers with a green eye are up to 5 inches across.

'Trotters Form'
Very long lasting pure white flowers.

'Wilder'
A heat resistant strain good for the south where the species is not.

Helleborus x nigercors 'Green Corsican'
Very vigorous, clumping perennial, reaching a maximum size of 3 x 3.2 ( rarely over 2 ) feet. It is the hybrid of Helleborus argutifolius & H. niger.
The attractive, large, toothed foliage is bright green.
It is very prolific blooming with up to 30 flowers at a time.
The white ( fading to green ) flowers, up to 2 inches across, open late winter into early spring.
Hardy zones 4 to 8.

* photos taken on Apr 4 2011 in Columbia, MD




'Alabaster'
Very vigorous, bearing creamy-white flowers up to 3 inches wide.


Helleborus orientalis ( Lenton Rose )

Native to the Balkans, Greece to the southern Caucasus in western Asia; this Helleboris can form a moderate to rapid growing clump up to 3 x 4.5 feet in size with great age. The Lenton Rose can live up to 50 years or more. The glossy deep green leaves can be up to 15 x 18 inches in size and include up to 9 leaflets.
Evergreen in most winters.
The flowers up to 3 inches across are plum colored from Febuary to May.
Fertilize in spring as new leaves are emerging will result in rapid growth of clump.
Grows well in acidic or alkaline well drained, light, moist soils. Hardy zones 3 to 8 and grows in sun to partial shade ( full shade also under deciduous trees ). It is surprisingly tolerant of harsh climates, surviving as far north as Calgary on the northern Great Plains if grown on a protected site.
Cut off the old leaves in late winter if they become dried or shriveled.

* photo taken on Apr 6 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Mar 23 2011 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD






* photos taken on March 2010 @ U.S. National Arboretum





* photos taken in installs in Columbia, MD






* photos taken in Wilkes-Barre, PA on April 2010

* photos taken on April 2010 in Columbia, MD















* photos taken on May 5 2010 in Columbia, MD



* photo taken on Mar 16 2012 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on April 27 2012 in Columbia, MD

'Blue Spray'

Flowers black-purple. Stems dark purplish-green.

'Brandywine'
Forms an evergreen clump up to 1.5 x 2 feet with handsome evergreen foliage.
Flowers range from single to double and are white, yellow, pink, red to dark purple in early spring.

* photos taken on Feb 25 2012 in Columbia, MD




* photos taken on Jun 2 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Feb 23 2017 in Columbia, MD


'Citron'
Flowers rose-pink inside and yellow outside.

'Dawn'
Shiny pale pink flowers eventually turning coppery red.

'Eco Golden Eye'
Purple flowers veined darker.

'Garnet'
Deep purplish red flowers veined deeper purple.

* photos taken on Feb 19 2012 in Columbia, MD


'Golden Lotus'

* photos taken on May 27 2017 @ Meadowlark Botanical Gardens, Vienna, VA


'Heartsease'
Maroon-red colored flowers.

* photos taken on Mar 16 2012 in Columbia, MD



'Lady Series'
Also called Helleborus orientalis 'Winter Joy Bouquet'. A group of hybrids reaching up to 2 x 4 feet in size with larger more brilliant colored flowers borne late winter into early spring.
The luxuriant foliage is glossy deep green. They are named by color and these cultivars include: 'Blue Lady',
'Pink Lady', 'Red Lady', 'White Lady', 'White Lady Spotted', 'Yellow Lady'.
The cultivars 'White Lady', 'Red Lady' & 'Blue Lady' generally breeds true from seed.

'Blue Lady'

* photo taken on Apr 10 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Apr 16 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 20 2015 in Columbia, MD


* photos taken on Feb 23 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Mar 18 2017 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD

* photos taken on Mar 10 2017 in Columbia, MD


'Pink Lady'

* photo taken on Mar 1 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Apr 20 2017 in Columbia, MD


'Red Lady'

* photos taken March 2010 @ U.S. National Arboretum, DC



* photo taken on May 8 2010 @ McCrillis Gardens, Bethesda, MD

* photo taken on Apr 10 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on July 15 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Nov 18 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Feb 23 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Mar 22 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Oct 17 2017 in Columbia, MD


'White Lady'

* photo taken on Mar 23 2011 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD

* photos taken on Apr 10 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 20 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on May 9 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Mar 1 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Mar 14 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 1 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Apr 15 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 27 2017 in Columbia, MD


'White Spotted Lady'

* photos taken on Apr 10 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 20 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on May 20 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Oct 14 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 10 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 20 2017 in Columbia, MD


'Yellow Lady'

* photo taken @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014


'Lydbrook Strain'
* photos taken on Mar 23 2011 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD







'Onyx Odessy'
Forms a clump up to 2 x 2 feet in size, bearing very double, deep purple to purplish-black flowers up to 3 inches wide. It originated as part of the 'Winter Jewels' series of Helleborus.
The glossy deep green foliage is often purplish-black at first.


* photos taken on Apr 18 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Mar 15 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on May 17 2017 in Columbia, MD


'Picadilly'

* photo taken on Aug 5 2017 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD


'Parrot'
Yellow flower hanging downward.

'Queen of the Night'
Nodding deep purple flower.

'Royal Heritage Hybrids'
Forming sturdy long lived evergreen clumps to 2 x 3 feet. They produce flowers up to 2 inches across over an incredibly long bloom period up to 5 months long from winter through spring. Comes in color forms such as 'Royal Heritage Purple', 'Royal Heritage White'

* photos taken on Mar 23 2011 in Wheaton, MD






* photos taken on Aug 23 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Nov 6 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on July 1 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Mar 18 2017 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD

* photos taken on Apr 5 2017 in Catonsville, MD

* photos taken after deadheading old flowerstalks

* photo taken on Jul 9 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Aug 21 2017 in Columbia, MD


'Snow Queen'
Fully double white flowers that are green flushed at the base.

'Sorcerer'
Very rare with black-purple flowers; also a blue-black form.

'Winter Jewels'
An excellent series of very sturdy, vigorous, colorful, abundant blooming hybrids originating from renound plant hybridizer Marietta O'Byrne. They typically reach up to 24 x 20 inches in size. They bloom for over 3 months during winter and spring, with huge flowers up to 4 inches across. The foliage is deep green. 'Apricot Blush' has orangish-yellow flowers with rose-pink edge and veins. 'Golden Sunrise' has yellow, single flowers. 'Ruby Wine' has deep red, cupped, single flowers. 'White Pearl' has white, single flowers with a deep red center.

'Winter Thrillers'
An excellent series of very sturdy, vigorous, colorful, abundant blooming hybrids originating from Great Garden Plants in Michigan. They typically reach up to 20 x 24 inches in size. They bloom for over 3 months during winter and spring, with huge flowers up to 3 inches across. 'Pink Parachutes' is the most popular of this series with pink ( often dotted maroon ) flowers that are even larger, up to 4 inches across borne atop sturdy thick stems. 'Ballerina Ruffles' has large nodding pink flowers with deep purple speckles. 'Mango Magic' has cupped orange flowers with red edges. 'Pink Fizz' has pinkish-white flowers with red veins radiating out from a red center.
Hardy zones 4 to 8.
For more - copy and paste this direct link to Great Garden Plants.
( http://www.greatgardenplants.com/index.php?pageId=1153 )

* photos taken on May 3 2014 in Baltimore Co., MD

* photos taken on Apr 11 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on July 25 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Nov 18 2016 in Columbia, MD


* photos taken on Feb 23 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos of 'Pink Parachutes' taken Feb 24 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 8 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on May 17 2017 in Columbia, MD


Helleborus 'Penny's Pink'
A vigorous, bushy, clumping, evergreen perennial, reaching up to 2 x 2 feet.
The leathery foliage is bronze-green at first with pink veining, later turning to blue-green with bright silvery-green veining.
The showy deep pink flowers are borne over a long season lasting a few months from late winter into mid-spring.
Hardy zones 5 to 8 ( possibly 4 on very protected sites ).

* photos taken on May 3 2014 in Baltimore Co., MD

* photo taken on June 17 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 21 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on May 20 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Feb 23 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 20 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on May 27 2017 @ Meadowlark Botanical Gardens, Vienna, VA


Helleborus purpurescens
A deciduous, perennial, forming a compact clump up to 2 x 2.5 feet in size, that is native to east Europe ( from southeastern Poland to western Ukraine; south to Czechoslovakia to Romania ).
The very attractive, palmate leaves are composed of deeply-divided leaflets. The foliage is bright green at first, turning to glossy deep green above, hairy beneath.
The reddish-purple ( greenish inside ), cup-shaped flowers, up to 3 inches across, are borne early to mid spring.
Hardy zones 5 to 8 in partial shade preferring humus-rich soil.

Helleboris sternii
The vigorous hybrids between Helleboris argutifolius & H. lividus
The foliage is grayish green with greenish-white veins, and have margins that are either spined, toothed or smooth.
The bright green flowers are borne on large heads during late winter, peprsisting well into spring.
Hardy zones 6 +, it grows well in alkaline soil and prefers some sun and even tolerate full sun.

'Blackthorn.
Reaching only up to 2 feet in size.
The foliage is marbled with silver gray
Flowers are borne on purple stems and are green flushed pink.

'Broughton Beauty'
Vigorous growing up to 4 feet in size with glossy green leaves up to 9 inches.
Foliage is dark gray-green with conspicuous marbling. The flowers on purplish-pink stems are green flushed pink. Hardy north to zone 5

Helleboris 'Sunmarble'
Reaching up to 2 x 4 feet with incredible white markings on the huge, leathery, evergreen foliage. The huge flowers are white, up to 5 inches across and last for months from Febuary to May. Hardy north to zone 6

Helleboris thibetianus
A perennial, reaching up to 20 x 15 inches in size, that is native to mountains in s of Gansu, Shaanxi and Sichuan Provinces in China.
The foliage dies down during summer, re-emerging during autumn.
The pale pink to pink flowers, up to 2.5 inches across, are borne during early spring.
Hardy zones 5a to 8 ( 4 on protected sites ) in partial shade on moist, fertile, well drained soil. It does not enjoy excessively hot summers or extended drought. Hard late freezes may ruin the blooms.

* photo taken on March 2010 @ U.S. National Arboretum



Helleborus viridis ( Green Hellebore )

A graceful, deciduous clumping perennial, reaching up to 2 x 2 feet, that is native to Europe from northern England to Germany and south.
The leaves, up to 12 inches across, are composed of 7 to 11 sharply-toothed ( often lobed ), narrow oblong leaflets, up to 8 inches in length. The foliage is luxuriant bright green.
The bright yellow-green ( with purple marking ), nodding flowers, up to 2.3 inches across, are borne during early spring.
Hardy zones 4 to 8, it is easy to grow and likes limey soils. Clay tolerant.

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