Helleborus flowers in the middle of winter
It’s always spectacular: a plant that blooms when most garden plants are hibernating.
Helleborus (also known as the Christmas rose) treats you to large white flowers with a fantastic crown of stamens at their heart from November to March.
Helleborus niger is most widely offered in December. This clump-forming, usually evergreen perennial is loved for its nodding clusters of bowl-shaped white flowers in winter and early spring. The dark foliage consists of multiple smaller leaves. There are various cultivars, usually with white flowers such as the cultivars ‘Christmas Carol’, ‘Dafine’, ‘Shining Star’, and Jushua.
Helleborus orientalis has yellow, pink and dark purple flowers, and there are also varieties with spotted flowers. Like Helleborus niger, this Christmas rose comes in various sizes, from small enough to be used in a hanging basket through to a tall bush which needs a substantial pot or a big spot in the border.
• The common name of Christmas rose derives from an old legend in which the plant emerged in the snow from the tears of a girl who had no gift for the baby Jesus in Bethlehem.
• Helleborus symbolises pioneering and survival.
Helleborus is a member of the Ranunculaceae (buttercup) family. The plant is native to the forests of south and central Europe and west Asia. The plant can be spotted in the wild in the Alps, Carpatrhian and Appenine mountains.