As winter approaches, a perfect plant to brighten the garden is the late-flowering hellebore. Perennial hellebores, often with deep green foliage and delicate flowers, bring interest to the garden through to early spring.
When choosing your hellebore, to guarantee breed excellence look for the Helleborus Gold Collection® (HGC) symbol. Containing varieties of Hellborus niger and hybrids, to be admitted to the HGC collection requires meeting high breeding standards and strict criteria.
Helleborus x ericsmithii ‘Maestro’
This variety has dusky-rose buds, which open to creamy-white flowers, flushed pink. In turn, these become reddish-pink with age. These are dramatically offset against veined, deep green leaves with red stems. ‘Maestro’ is a very compact, later-flowering variety, which blooms from late winter to early spring.
Helleborus x ericsmithii ‘Marlon’
New to our range in 2016, ‘Marlon’ has blush colour rose buds, which open to large cream flowers that age to green.
Helleborus x ericsmithii ‘Shooting Star’
This variety produces masses of rose-pink buds, which open to creamy-white flowers, fading to sage-green. These flowers erupt from the centre of the plant – giving rise to the name ‘Shooting Star’ – and resemble a bouquet. It has deep green leaves with prominent veins and dark red stems.
Helleborus x ericsmithii ‘Snow Dance’
‘Snow Dance’ is a vigorous and heavy bloomer. The dusty-rose buds open to creamy flowers, which mature to a rosy cinnamon colour mid-season. The dark green leaves are on brown-red stems.
Helleborus x ballardiae ‘Merlin’
Another recent addition to the Hillier range is ‘Merlin’, a magical variety. The pale pink flowers mature to a deeper pink, before turning a maroon shade.
Helleborus niger ‘Wintergold’
This delicate Christmas rose is a robust evergreen with white flowers and dark green foliage. It also makes an excellent cut flower. In the garden, grow in good well-drained soil in partial shade.