Winter flower


Latin name:
Europe, Asia Minor.
Alternative name:

The genus Hellebore, Winterberry, or Helleborus (Helleborus), has about 15 species: these are herbaceous perennial rhizomatous plants. Many of them can be found in nature, in the conditions of natural growth.

Leaves are palmate-dissected, often wintering, leathery long-stemmed. The flower-bearing stem grows up to 50 cm in length.

Most species have 5-lobed corolla-shaped large calyces of various colors (white, pink, yellow, red, purple, speckled and striped). Flowers with numerous small greenish petals bloom in early spring.

Winter hardy species - can winter in the open ground without shelter.

As a houseplant, black hellebore (Helleborus niger) is the most common, Italians call this plant "Christmas rose". It has dark green leathery evergreen rosette leaves and drooping white, whitish-green or creamy-white large flowers with golden anthers. There are many garden forms and varieties with flowers, the color of which varies from white to pink and bright red. The evergreen Caucasian hellebore (H. caucasicus) has a height of about 40 cm, peduncles with 1-3 flowers up to 8 cm in diameter. Blooms in winter or early spring; corolla-shaped calyces of it purple on the outside and green on the inside. Hellebore holly leaf (H. argutifolius) is an evergreen plant. Light green leaves are prickly. In spring, hanging yellow-green flowers bloom, collected in brushes.

Deciduous species include the following,

Hellebore green (H. midis) with palmately dissected dark green leaves. In February-March, greenish - yellow cup-shaped flowers bloom.

Hellebore dark red (H. atrorubens) is characterized by dark green toothed leaves.

From January to March, red-purple flowers with long yellow anthers bloom. Hellebore stinky (H. foetidus)-with dark green divided glossy leaves, yellow - green flowers, often with a purple border, collected in panicles and blooming in spring. As for hellebore oriental (H. orientalis), it is a plant with large dark green leaves; it can be evergreen, but only in areas of the temperate climate zone. In February-March, flattened cream-colored flowers bloom, with dark red spots on the inner side.


Hellebores are grown in the open ground: they are used for planting in parks and rocky gardens between shrubs, in borders, as well as in pots for cutting and winter forcing. They grow well in moist, even compacted soil, but well-drained and acidic. If the crop is grown in a pot, transplants should be kept to a minimum. It is better to limit yourself to "strengthening" plants, updating the surface layer of the soil and increasing its surface level.


Watering should be done regularly, especially during prolonged droughts, to keep the soil moist. But at the same time, make sure that water does not stagnate in the soil.


Seeds are sown in autumn (after harvesting) or spring (after stratification) in a light substrate. Shoots - in a year, they are dived several times, planted in a permanent place in 3-4 years.

In late summer or early spring, it can be propagated by dividing rhizomes. Each divided part should have at least one peduncle and a well-formed root system.


Hellebore prefers partial shade and even a completely shaded place.


This plant is extremely resistant to both high and low air temperatures.

Diseases and pests

Coniothyrium hellebori causes dark spots to appear on the leaves, stems and flowers, after which the infected parts of the plant turn yellow and fall off. The damaged parts should be removed and then treated with captan. Gray rot (Botrytis cinerea) provokes the formation of yellowish spots on the leaves. They get rid of the fungus with the help of chemical preparations.


Hellebore seedlings in cups are sold in specialized gardening centers and nurseries. It should be purchased in late summer or early autumn, so that it can immediately be planted on a permanent landing site.

Care summary

Cultivation simple
Watering keep the soil moist at all times
Transplanting not performed
Appearance maintenance not required
Location partial shade or heavily shaded
Temperature resistant to both low and high temperatures
Flowering time winter-spring
Height 25-50 cm


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