Thursday, March 13, 2014

Signs of Life



The garden seems to be coming alive again after a cold winter. The daffodils have been spectacular and the hellebores are looking great as well. I began growing hellebores a few years ago - very late in the game. I think the expense of them was probably what kept me from buying them in the past. They are really wonderful plants and so welcome this time of year. There is a good article in the latest Alabama Gardener by Troy Marden, who gardens in Tennessee, on varieties that do well for him. I have made a note of those!




An interesting hellebore that was given to me by Margie Anderton is Hellebore foetidus, commonly known as "Stinking Hellebore" or "Bear's Claw Hellebore". It looks a bit different from the hellebores pictured above but nevertheless quite striking. It grows in an upright manner and has leaves that are long and narrow (elliptical). The drooping, bell-shaped greenish-white flowers begin to appear in February.



As I was taking the photo, I noticed a visitor.



Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy

8 comments:

  1. My hellebores are late this year, but just this week they decided that it was time to finally show their faces.

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  2. Your garden is so far ahead of here this year. I have my first crocus up today. It looks stunted. I am thrilled to see it anyway. My hellebores might bloom in the next couple of days if it stays warm. I am hopeful.

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  3. P.S. Take some of those nodding heads indoors and float them in a bowl of water. A nice way to enjoy the blooms up close and personal. :)

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  4. My mom started growing hellebores about 20 years ago, and they have been divided and shared with so many people. Mine are descendents of hers. This is the first winter I ever remember trimming back last years growth, and they are blooming their little hearts out right now!

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  5. Beautiful photos. I have solid white and the pink like yours. Guess they have cross pollinated. ..This year I have a variegated one. So easy to grow and make tons of seedlings. Mine are a month later blooming too.

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  6. Ah! Love these! Let's hope when spring comes it is long lived and perfect in every way!

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  7. I love hellebores! Mine have cross-pollinated to produce an amazing variety. I love to examine individual blooms. They each have their own characteristics.

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  8. I am not a big fan of hellebores, but at this time of year, (and with the help of your photos) that may be changing in the future.
    Ray

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