Helleborus × hybridus

Lenten rose

  • © Great Plant Picks

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

  • © Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

Outstanding Qualities

Once a relatively unknown winter-blooming perennial hellebores have moved from limited choices to the main stage with superior flower colors of purple, yellow, apricot, pink, white, and almost every shade in between plus double forms and picotees are much more common now as well. The Winter Jewels® Series from Ernie & Marietta O'Byrne of Northwest Garden Nursery in Eugene, Oregon is just one example of the exceptional breeding work being done today. Be sure to shop when these hellebores are in flower so that you can choose the brightest and most clear colors. The palmate, leathery, green foliage is handsome and plays well with finer textured plants.

Quick Facts

Plant Type: perennial

Foliage Type: evergreen

Plant Height: 1 ft. 6 in. (0.46 meters)

Plant Width/Spread: 2 ft. 0 in. (0.61 meters)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 to 10

Flower Color: green, pink, purple, white, yellow

Sun/Light Exposure: full sun to light or open shade

Water Requirements: regular watering during dry weather

Resistant to: deer

Colors & Combos

Great Color Contrasts: chartreuse, yellow, burgundy

Great Color Partners: dark green, silver, white

Culture Notes
Lenten rose grows best in full sun to light or open shade. It prefers a rich well-drained soil, but will tolerate sandy or clay soil if the drainage is adequate. It is a heavy feeder and appreciates regular fertilizing and regular watering during dry weather. The leaves are evergreen, but should be cut to the ground in December or early January to allow the best viewing of the flowers. Faded flowers can be cut back in late April. They will reseed, but often seedlings are not as nice as the parent plant. As the seedlings develop and bloom, it pays to be ruthless and only allow the best and prettiest seedlings to remain.