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How to Grow Hellebores

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    Hellebores are known as ‘Winter Roses’ although they are not related or even similar in growth habits to roses.

    Hellebores love the cooler weather and thrive in shaded locations. They are perfect to plant under trees or in areas of dappled shade in the garden.

    These wonderful plants have been bred and developed over recent years and are now available in a multitude of colours including purple, yellow, peach, lime, pink, almost black, white and even green flowers. Traditionally Hellebore flowers were simple single cup-shaped blooms, but modern varieties include many double, semi-double blooms with spectacular markings and patterns such as speckles, freckles, smudges and streaks.

    Hellebores flower for about 3 months over what is often seen as the dull and bleak time of the year. The stems and flowers can be cut and used in vases as drooping flower arrangements or cut and float the flowers in a water bowl as a colourful décor feature.

    Image: Hellebore Angel Glow

    General Hellebore Information:

    Hellebores prefer growing in shaded positions and need to be protected from harsh sunlight. They are excellent to grow under a deciduous tree, which provides plenty of dappled sun in winter and then shades the plant when the leaves grow back on the tree.

    They are great to grow in pots and they can be placed in more open positions for their spectacular winter displays and moved to shaded positions over the warmer seasons. Always use a premium potting mix for the best results

    Soil Preparation:

    Prepare garden beds by enriching with organic compost or animal manure. Hellebores adapt well to most soil types except wet clay or extremely sandy soils.

    Image: Hellebore Anna’s Red


    You can plant hellebores at any time of the year, but the best selection of plants will be in autumn and winter.

    Space them about 50 cm apart.

    Mulch garden beds to keep the roots cool during the warmer months.


    Ensure that new plants remain moist for their first season as they establish themselves. They are relatively drought-tolerant once established.

    Water hellebores occasionally during summer


    Feed your hellebores with a balanced, complete fertiliser in late autumn to boost winter flowering.

    Pests and Diseases:

    Hellebores are rarely troubled by pests or diseases.

    Keep an eye out for aphids; if they occur, spray with a garden insecticide.

    Avoid planting them in too sunny a spot, as leaves can become scorched.

    Plant Hellebores this season and discover the joy of brightening the days of winter with brilliant displays of these hardy garden features.