I met my first hellebore back in 1988. Judy, my next door neighbor at time, introduced us. I remember the day well, plant-wise, anyway. But for the life of me, I can’t remember where we went. My first hellebore made her home in my Oakwood garden where I often wonder if she’s still there.
I was smitten by the promise of a flower blooming in the winter. That was all the encouragement I needed - even if I did have to lay on the ground to see it. This was also the beginning of my winter gardening journey. If it flowers in the winter and I can grow it, I do.
Over the years, as I built my winter garden display, it’s the hellebores that I return to time and time again. They were my first love, and somehow first loves are always the best.
Many of my hellebores are baby crosses that my clients wanted cleared out or passed to me by a friend. They cross easily. They baby easily.
Unless you are particular about getting a variety you desire, getting babies from a gardening friend is a good way to go. I branched out this year and bought my first double. Then another. I promised I would never do that, but then I remembered, never say never.
My first double was ‘Southern Bells’, one that I picked up at this year’s Pine Knot Farms open hellebore days I shared the wealth and purchased my next double hellebore at Gethsemane Gardens in Greensboro, NC
I thought I had a nice collection until I visited the hellebore garden of my friend Bobby. Here is some from his collection:
Here’s some more from Helen’s Haven:
So jazz up your winter garden. Don’t be a bore – hellebore!