Hallelujah Hellebore

Helleborus x ballardiae ‘Merlin’ One of my favorites and another early bloomer. Outward facing pink blooms mature to a deep cranberry. Wonderful when planted with early or mid-spring blooming powder pink tulips!

At a time when color in the garden is sparse, hellebores are pure delight. Mine are looking gorgeous!

Helleborus x ballardiae ‘Cinnamon Snow’
One of the rarest of the Helleborus niger,
derived froma cross of Helleborus niger
and Helleborus lividus.

The “petals,” single or double, are actually sepals and shelter the true tiny flowers nestled in the center of the blossom surrounded by yellow stamens. The petal-like sepals, either nodding or outward facing, range in color from deep plum, rose, apricot, mauve, soft yellow, chartreuse, white, and are often spotted with purple.

Their large, handsome leathery, palmate, serrate foliage contrasts nicely with finer foliage plant material. I love grouping and planting them with ferns, hostas and other shade-loving plants; perfect for a woodland garden.


If you’ve never tried growing hellebores, I highly recommend them. I grow a few varieties, Helleborus orientalis, more commonly known as Lenten Rose and Helleborus niger, more commonly know as the Christmas Rose; neither are roses, they are actually in the Buttercup family.

Helleborus orientalis, commonly called Lenten Rose

They are super easy to grow and need little care. They love moist—but not wet—rich organic, neutral to alkaline soil, and are greedy feeders. (I like to use a time release fertilizer like Osmocote or a balanced organic fertilizer in early spring.) Plant in an area that receives winter sun, but is later shaded by deciduous trees and shrubs.

(In the late winter the foliage will often look tattered, so I’ll prune back the dead and disfigured foliage before the new growth appears.)

Enjoy, and as always love hearing from you!

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to drop me a line in the comment box below.

Till next time… Love, Holly ~ Your Queen Bee at The White Pear