Saturday, 21 December 2013

Hellebore For December

This year, I'm taking the late Geoff Hamilton's advice and visiting a nursery each month with a view to buying a plant which is in flower for my garden. Doing this should ensure that I have something blooming in my garden every month of the year.

I've seen snowdrops in flower starting to appear on blogs, and as I have very few of them in my own garden, I thought it might be nice to acquire a few more as my December plant. However, after visiting numerous garden centres and nurseries, I've been unable to find any which are already blooming. In fact, only one of the garden centres I visited had any at all. It was time for plan B.

I had to go in to Leeds today, very last minute Christmas shopping. It wasn't as busy as I'd expected actually, which was good, and I'd only got a couple of things to buy so I wasn't there long. I decided to pop in to the market and I managed to find this beautiful hellebore for the princely sum of £2.45. I'm not very knowledgeable where hellebores are concerned, so I don't know the variety, but as the sign stated it was a Christmas Rose, it may be helleborus niger. With only a few days to go until Christmas and with a name such as Christmas rose, I thought it would be fitting as my December plant.

There are very few seasonal flowers for sale in garden centres and nurseries in December, at least in the ones I've visited, but it's at this time of year that my garden needs something to brighten it up. I think the best place to look for plants at this time of year could possibly be the internet, unless I travel further afield to specialist nurseries.

I knew that December would be a challenge in itself with this challenge and I was right.

28 comments:

  1. An absolutely perfect choice for December Jo :) I hope that you are going to carry on with your monthly plant purchases in the new year.

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    1. I'm not sure I have room for many more plants, but I've enjoyed the challenge of finding something new each month this year.

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  2. I think your way of acquiring the Hellebore was "quicker to pay off" than mine. Mine are very small and it will be at least next year before they flower - possibly even the year after.

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    1. Yours will be beauties though, and if I had room for a collection like yours I'd buy them in a shot. I look forward to seeing yours flower in due course.

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  3. It is hellebore niger, Jo but it has been brought on early as they are rarely flowering until after Christmas. It's a trick used by many plant growers to get you to buy as we tend to buy plants that are flowering. Ours are just forming buds.

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    1. I've seen a hellebore niger on a blog just recently that's already in flower so perhaps the mild weather has brought them on a bit this year, so many plants are behaving strangely because of the weather just recently. I have to say that I actually prefer buying plants which aren't flowering, the pleasure is in the anticipation.

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  4. I'm sure your hellebore will give you much pleasure over the Christmas season. The plants are behaving strangely because of the mild weather. Hubs has brought in another pot of spring bulbs to stand on the kitchen window sill and they are shooting up well before I expected them to. I think there might be a hyacinth or two that he popped in the pot and I'm pleased to have them also peeping through.

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    1. I do love hellebores so I'm pleased with my December purchase. All the spring bulbs I planted in containers, except for the daffodils, are already shooting yet they've been stood outside, the weather's just been so mild. I love hyacinths, I shall buy some pots as I haven't planted my own.

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  5. It's lovely, they always amaze me with their winter blooms. I'm looking out for a Christmas Box plant which should flower now. I'd like one in my front garden.

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    1. I'm always amazed how these tough plants survive such low temperatures. I hope you find your Christmas Box, anything which flowers at this time of year is very welcome.

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  6. You are certainly right about December being a challenge. There is very little on offer right now. Your hellebore looks great and I'm sure will repay you handsomely when you get it in the ground.

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    1. It's a shame I couldn't find any snowdrops, I'd have liked to have added to the few I already have. I shall look out for some after Christmas, the garden centres may get some new stock in then.

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  7. Yay, hellebore, yes of course, a great choice, whether it flowers before or after Christmas doesn't really matter, as it will give you aniticpation won't it! It is looking beautiful right now. Happy Christmas to you and yours. xx

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    1. I would have liked to have found some snowdrops, but I'm very pleased with my hellebore, and it was such a bargain. Thank you, Happy Christmas to you and yours too.

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  8. Replies
    1. It isn't an easy challenge for December but I'm pleased I managed to find something.

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  9. One of my favourite flowers at this time of year, Jo - and a brilliant purchase at that price! I managed to buy 2 last year, one of which was eaten by slugs. I wanted to add to the group but haven't seen any for less than £12!! I have, however, taken a leaf from your book and yesterday chose ornamental cabbages, violas and variegated ivy from the garden centre for a seasonal planter!

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    1. I couldn't believe the price, hellebores can be so expensive in garden centres. What a shame that one of yours succumbed to slugs, I shall have to watch mine, I didn't know that slugs were partial to them. Your planter is going to look lovely with those plants.

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  10. I love hellebores, none of mine are in flower yet though. Happy Christmas!

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    1. That's something to look forward to then. I'd like to get some different coloured ones eventually. Happy Christmas to you too.

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  11. Such a pretty flower Jo. It certainly will brighten up the garden on those dreary days. I will be looking back over these monthly flower posts next year when really getting down to business with planting up the bee plot. IF I happen to come across anything I think you will like I will be sure to let you know!!

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    1. It is pretty, I'd like some other colours though now. I'm sure I'll like everything that you'll be planting on the bee plot, I look forward to hearing what you decide on.

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  12. I was curious as to what you would come up with for this one. A good find.

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    1. I would have like to have found something a little less predictable but the garden centres don't seem to cater for people wanting to add to their gardens in December.

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  13. A lovely purchase. I don't have any Hellebours niger. I should make a note of it in my garden notebook for any future garden. :)

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    1. They're lovely flowers to have in the garden at this time of year. Anything which blooms in the depths of winter has got to be worth having.

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  14. That is absolutely lovely, and WOW what an amazing price!!! Lucky you eh????xxx

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    1. I did a double take when I saw the price, though you can pick up some great bargains from markets.

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