Tag Archives: Hellebore

January Awakenings

On January 4, 2020 little tight hellebore buds were tucked in close to the earth. I just checked on them yesterday and they seemed content to stay hidden.  Today they have awakened.

Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)

Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)

Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)

Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)

Yesterday the lemony scent of daphne odora drifted through the air and with today’s breezes the effect is more pronounced.

Daphne odora (Winter daphne)

Daphne odora (Winter daphne)

In A Vase On Monday—Orchid Blush

In A Vase On MondayMonday brings the chance to share cut flowers from the garden by joining in Cathy’s weekly challenge In A Vase On Monday.

Early Sunday afternoon it was too icy for me to get out to check for any Hellebores that might be flowering on the northern side of the house.  Instead I resorted to using indoor blooms, three flowers from a holiday Phalaenopsis.

A curved section of the orchid stem and a wrapped Warneckii leaf placed in a new white oval container (2.5 x 2.5 inches) made a quick arrangement.

In A Vase On Monday - Orchid Blush

In A Vase On Monday – Orchid Blush

Not really pleased with the result, I tried again. Later in the day after sun had worked its magic against the ice, I ventured out to collect a few hellebores. Many were stuck under the ice, but I did find a few to use. On the way back inside I even plucked a deep purplish-red pansy.

In A Vase On Monday

In A Vase On Monday

The second version made for a happier vase on Monday.

Orchid, Pansy and Hellebore

Orchid, Pansy and Hellebore

Phalaenopsis (Moth Orchid)
‘Lemon Lime’ Warneckii

Thanks to Cathy for hosting this weekly flower addiction. It is always interesting and insightful to visit her at Rambling In The Garden to discover what she and others are placing In A Vase On Monday and feel free to join in.

In A Vase On Monday—Ruby Moon And Star

In A Vase On Monday - Ruby Moon And Star

In A Vase On Monday – Ruby Moon And Star

This last Monday of 2015 brings the chance to share cut flowers from the garden by joining in Cathy’s weekly challenge In A Vase On Monday.

Do you know the term Full Cold Moon? It is new to me, but suddenly this year I began seeing it frequently in the news.  “December’s full moon, the last of the year, is called the Full Cold Moon because it occurs during the beginning of winter (NASA).”

This year there was a full moon on Christmas day for the first time since 1977 (the next occurrence is not until 2034). Not surprisingly, given all the rain lately, it was cloudy here as the moon peaked (6:11 a.m. EST), but later we were able to glimpse the rare lunar event.

Inspired by December’s special moon, for this week’s arrangement I started by selecting the container—a ruby moon and star cut glass bowl that usually sits on my dining room buffet. I added only a few flowers allowing the intricate pattern to stand out as the main feature of the design.

In A Vase On Monday - Ruby Moon And Star

In A Vase On Monday – Ruby Moon And Star

Hellebores are beginning to flower and I was able to find one to float in the dish.

Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)

Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)

To set adrift alongside the hellebore I collected some colorful pansies from the meditation garden.

Pansies with a sprig of Angelina sedum

Pansies with a sprig of Angelina sedum

The crystal bowl is rather deep. Concerned the pansies were not sturdy enough to sit in such a large amount of water, I placed them into a pair of floating glass globes.

Pansies held in floating glass globes

Pansies held in floating glass globes

The floating globes, a recent hostess gift from my yoga friend Corrina, are lovely I think and are sure to be very useful. Designed with a well in the center to hold tea lights, they worked great for the pansies also.

In A Vase On Monday - Ruby Moon And Star

In A Vase On Monday – Ruby Moon And Star


Helleborus x hybridus (Lenten rose)
Viola tricolor var. hortensis (Pansy)
Sedum rupestre ‘Angelina’ (Angelina Stonecrop)

Here are the moon and star details, with the hellebore peeking though one of the moons.

Hellebore, framed by the moon

Hellebore, framed by the moon

As 2015 comes to a close, I would like to offer a big thanks to Cathy for hosting this weekly flower addiction. Visit her at Rambling In The Garden to discover what she and others are placing In A Vase On Monday.

January Signals

The garden is waking up. Lenten roses opened mid-month and today, the first Daffodils. A nice clump of Iberis Sempervirens (Candytuft) brightens a spot near a walkway.

[Note: I learned yesterday Helleborus x hybridus is the acceptable way to refer to Lenten Rose, instead of the previously accepted term, Helleborus orientalis, which I have been using.]


In early spring first the lenten roses, then the daffodils and spirea dominated the garden. By mid-April the first bearded iris had opened. Now, three and a half weeks later, a few irises, along with the old-fashioned rose and the clematises, remain in bloom.  Take a quiet stroll around the perennial beds and it is easy to notice the garden again is in transition.

Verbena bonariensis

A verbena bonariensis is blooming and echinacea (purple coneflower) are beginning to open.

Several foxgloves are forming their complex flowers. Nearby an ‘Irish eyes’ rudbeckia already has reached two of its expected five feet.

The monarda (bee balm) also is tall and seems primed for a big display of red and fragrance.

A soft gray mound of artemisia accents the border and a perennial Dusty miller is creeping through the garden. Asclepias tuberosa (Butterfly Weed) will soon add its bright reddish-orange color to the blue palette that has predominated the garden in early spring.


The very tips of the white tubular flowers of Penstemon digitalis ‘Husker Red’ (Beardtongue) are becoming visible.

These two penstemon are planted inside the meditation path forming a wall at one of the turnaround points.


One of the small pink yarrow is just beginning to open among the lamb’s ears. Rising only 10-15 inches, it has a lacy flower and a dark green, feathery-soft foliage.

Lavender will soon be adding its beautiful color and unique fragrance to several locations. The lavenders responded positively to severe pruning in February.


A Garden Highlight

An exciting highlight is the single bloom on the peony recently added to the garden, Paeonia ‘Pink Parfait.’  Although its planting tag indicated a June bloom, it was ready yesterday without regard to the calendar, as was the gardener.

Paeonia 'Pink Parfait'

Paeonia 'Pink Parfait'

Changes Bring Chores

As the focus transitions away from roses and irises there are many required tasks this week that will help keep the garden looking nice. The faded iris blooms and the bloom stalks need to trimmed back to tidy up, although the leaves need to remain for several months before being trimmed back to 6 inches in a fan shape. Is this the year the irises will finally get divided?

Rose Campion

The southern path is full of white rose campion, but none of the favored magenta-hued rose campion survived the winter.  Deadheading is a must if they are to continue to look attractive and to keep them from self-sowing so heavily.

The many Eastern Red Columbine is done for this year and needs to be cut back severely; it will maintain a nice green mound all summer.

Tradescantia is pretty now but needs to be thinned, as it has spread too widely. Many were sheared heavily ten days ago. The daylilies, the sweet peas–all overgrown.  The spirea finished its bloom weeks ago and should be pruned back hard to maintain its size. Other chores abound.  The fence installation was completed last week and paths to the gates need to be improved.

How to finish planting the meditation circle is still an interesting problem to solve, something to ponder while working on these maintenance tasks this week and contemplating transitions.

End-of-Winter Beginning-of-Spring Inventory

March 20, 2011. Today in this Northern Hemisphere town of Chapel Hill, N.C., the vernal equinox occurs at 6:21 pm.  This seems like a good time to inventory the garden.

The newly planted Blue Point Juniper hedge is doing well, but will not be providing much screening for several years.


The earliest of the daffodils and the burgundy hyacinths are at the end of their bloom cycle. Iberis sempervirens (candytuft) and  Muscari (Grape Hyacinth) are opening slowly. Several sedums are emerging (the rabbits must be pleased).

Tradescantia (Spiderwort) is coming up in various spots and a few echinacea (Purple coneflower) have returned.

The first flower is open today on the White Flowering Dogwood, while ‘Flower Carpet’ Narcissus have been lovely for a week or more.

Coral Delight Camellia

A nice surprise in the garden today.

The spring-blooming camellia ‘Coral Delight’ popped out when I was not looking. I missed checking on it yesterday and today discovered several blossoms had opened wide.

Daylilies attract the deer so I am trying to pull out many of them.  I must hurry to finish the job before they grow any larger or they will be too tough to dig out. Some of the resulting space freed so far was used to transplant a few Shasta daisies.

Hellebore- Lenten Rose

Hellebore (Lenten Rose), which opened one month ago, continue to bloom profusely in their charming manner.

The newly planted Sweet William is doing well and the evergreen HeucheraPenstemon is recovering from the long winter. Digitalis Purpurea ‘Alba’ or ‘Camelot White’ (Foxglove) looks promising.

Small pink yarrow, tansy, lamb’s ears and rose campion (shown here), all rather aggressive growers, are coming back strong.

The old-fashioned spirea is the star in its section of the garden, brightening up the entire space of the western border.  (A pink saucer magnolia behind the spirea is a fortunate example of a borrowed view.)


Nearby the Eastern Redbud competes for attention, deservedly so.


Just one week ago the Jackmanii clematis had new leaves, but was still largely brown. Today it is lush with green.


Several black-eyed Susans echinacea (purple coneflower) seem pleased with their new location along the southern path. They were transplanted last year from an over-crowded spot where they did not have have enough sun.

Russian Sage and Bee Balm

Perovskia atriplicifolia (Russian Sage) is another transplant to this section of the garden; Monarda (Bee Balm) is just starting to emerge in this and several other sections of the garden.

Phlox subulata (Creeping Phlox) has been blooming all over town but started opening only today in this garden.

Creeping Phlox

Phlox divaricata (Woodland phlox) has been a favorite in this garden, but it has not bloomed well in several years.

Woodland phlox

Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern Red Columbine) is quickly unfolding in several spots around the garden.

Eastern red columbine

Salvia (Meadow Sage) has started to form buds.

Meadow Sage

An iceberg rose should have been pruned earlier, but it is now getting its leaves. The deer find it delicious. There are several perky mounds of catmint. Sword-like leaves of these bearded iris seem to grow inches daily. The garden also has German, Japanese and Siberian iris and a couple of Dutch iris.

Catmint, Iceberg Rose and Iris

In some ways the garden appears bare but there are many other plants not even mentioned.  The inventory will have to be continued later.  One last thought for today though.

As I go about renovating this garden, I do recognize that improving the overall design and structure (or “bones) will make the garden more interesting year-round.  I have read that just having a collection of plants does not make a garden.  But at this time of year seeing my particular group of plants develop and mature provides immeasurable delight and satisfaction.  It is like having old friends come to visit.  And it feels like a garden.