The Brian Mathew 'Hellebores' book

woadwoman(z7 Oregon)February 3, 2004

I've been searching for a used copy of "Hellebores" by Brian Mathew for a long time without luck, and I can't even find it in a library system within 400 miles in any direction.

I did see yesterday that there's a used copy for sale via the site - a used library hardcover copy described as in "good" condition. That's way too expensive for me, but if anyone is looking for it at that price, it's there.

If anyone has the book, would you be so kind as to let me know if it includes much about the genetics of hellebores?




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Brian Mathew goes into the history of the hellebore in great detail. There is great detail of earlier H x hybridus but Mathew's takes a more detailed look at the species and what at the time was considered the correct taxonomy of the genus Helleborus.

I do not think what you are looking for in genetics is covered in the book. As far as Helleborus x hybridus the book is probably too old. H. x hybridus has changed by the constant hybridizing.

'Hellebores' by Brian Mathew is still the best reference on the subject of hellebores in my opinion. I think it will be the best detailed work on hellebores, until Brian Mathew writes a new hellebore reference. I beleive he will, it is just a matter of time. The taxonomy of Helleborus is under review and change. Sub species are being closely examined and what was correct twenty years ago has changed. I would expect a new book would not sensationalize H x hybridus like allot of popular publications but get into more detail of the true species. Brian Mathew has the quality of writing skill and knowledge to be exact.

Better yet, a real bonanza would be 'Helleborus Taxonomy' by Brian Mathew and Will McLewin. Now we are cooking!

In my opinion, shelf all the other hellebore books and buy a used 'Hellebores' by Brian Mathew, it is a must have for anyone serious about Helleborus.


    Bookmark   February 3, 2004 at 4:38PM
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addict(east UK)

Hi, There is nothing published that I have found on hellebore genetics and especially H.hybridus not even in Phd research literaure and I have been looking for a long time now c. * years (sad eh?)

    Bookmark   March 13, 2004 at 1:42PM
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woadwoman(z7 Oregon)

Thank you, Bruce, as always, for your helpful and informative response.

Hi, Mike. I'm back at the library computer. Thanks for letting me know that you have not found much on hellebore genetics in the English language. I will stop looking in "Dissertation Abstracts."

I am wondering, and possibly Johan knows, if genetic work has been done by researchers in Eastern Europe or other geographic regions in which hellebores are native, and published in languages unknown to most of us who use this forum?

Wow, Mike, your red onions get fungal infections just as fast as your white ones? Is nothing safe? My spotted white and dark colored hellebores are still fairly fungus-free this year, and the white ones are having fungus problems. I have been trying a dusting of cinnamon on the fungus, as cinnamon has some anti-fungal properties. I can't say definitively that it works, but the flowers smell nice!

Take care.


    Bookmark   April 1, 2004 at 4:34PM
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Greenmanplants(UDSA Zone 8)

The trouble with the Brian Matthew book is twofold, firstly it is out of print and more importantly it is out of date. The publishers recognise that it needs a thorough update, bringing in genetics and new species....??

Get a secondhand one if you can!

Cheers Greenmanplants

    Bookmark   April 7, 2004 at 3:37AM
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addict(east UK)

I think hellebores by Marlene Ahlburg is actually the better book unless you're into taxonomy but that is also out of date and print. She does however give a few ideas about genetics but no real revelations. It's not been done. Got 10 years to spare? - do the research and publish a book. Even the national collection holder in UK who do a degree in genetics has no useful info- I have asked!

    Bookmark   April 15, 2004 at 5:49PM
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