Order Helleborus online?

Swede8October 22, 2013

Hi. I love Helleborus and wanted to order some online. I live in North East. Can anyone advice on where I can order good quality plants? I was going to plant them under a tree, mostly shaded area. I'm new to this, but I would love for them to spread and if I can eventually get seedlings that would be wonderful. So I don't want to order sterile varieties. My nursery sells Helleborus SPP. They are expensive, and I don't know if they are sterile. We had small, all white Helleborus when I grew up. I think they may have been Niger. I have seen bigger, purple pink and green. Gorgeous, but do they spread?

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What you are looking for are Helleborus x hybridus, sometimes incorrectly referred to as H. orientalis (aka orientalis hybrids). These come in the largest range of colors - whites, pinks, yellows, apricots, reds, purple, blues, slates and greens and sometimes combinations thereof :-) These are extremely fertile plants and will self-sow if left alone. Offspring won't necessarily look like the parents as these are all very complex hybrids plus they will cross fertilize with any other xhybridus plants around.

They don't need heavy shade and in fact will bloom better if given a reasonable amount of sun.

Hellebores of any size can be expensive and named forms will always be more pricey than seed strains......most of these are developed from tissue culture and are patented. I have no idea what Helleborus SPP is unless they mean as an abbreviation for 'species'......... and I would want to know why they couldn't be more specific. Not all that many hellebores are sold as species these days - the vast majority are hybrids of some form or another.

There are lost of great mail order sources for hellebores. Some of the specialty sources are Pine Knot Farms, Fraser's Thimble Farms, Plant Delights Nursery, Sunshine Farm and Gardens.

    Bookmark   October 22, 2013 at 5:08PM
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Ispahan Zone6a Chicago

I ordered a flat of mixed seedlings from Pine Knot at the end of August and I can vouch for both the quality of their plants and their wonderful, personalized customer service.

I have ordered named hellebores from other mail order sources, including Plant Delights, Avant Gardens and Deer Resistant Landscape Nursery. All were very healthy and are doing well in their first season in my garden, but were *much* smaller than plants purchased locally even though prices were roughly the same.

If you can call around to find a nursery within driving distance so you can personally select larger potted plants in the spring, I would highly recommend that, even if it means a weekend road trip. A local independent nursery near me had a quite a few this spring. By no means did they have an exhaustive selection, but I was able to obtain large, beefy plants of clones like 'Ivory Prince' and 'Pink Frost' as well as select seed strains like 'Mrs Betty Ranicar' and Marietta O'Byrne's single and double lines growing 1-1.5 gallon pots for around $20 each. All were blooming so I could select my favorites.

However, if you can't find any local sources, then any of the mail order sources mentioned above will likely provide great material. Just expect the plants to be a little smaller.

    Bookmark   October 23, 2013 at 12:39PM
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Thank you both for your help and your knowledgeable advice! I was first considering fall planting, but I think I will wait until spring.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2013 at 10:27PM
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