How are your Elizabeth Town Hellebores doing?

Terry_NY(6)November 21, 2003

Since there has been much discussed about how to grow the seeds from Elizabeth Town Hellebores, I thought it would be great to hear how they are progressing and what you are doing with them now that winter is coming.

I have brought mine back into my unheated room in the basement (where they stared their life) after summer time spent outdoors. Had some problems with little black bugs this summer but sprayed with a combo of dish detergent, oil and water and right now they appear to be gone. I have noticed a few (Spotted and Mrs. Betty Ranicar) have had some leaves blackening. These I have seperated from the rest of the healthy ones. Any suggestions on what it causing this or how to treat them? At this point I cut off the blackened leaves and discarded and I am hoping new leaf growth will appear healthy.

Look forward to hearing from everyone.

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morz8(Washington Coast Z8b)

Mine are thriving, healthy and happy. I have several in the ground, and have given many away; can't wait to try again this winter.

Betty Ranicar, which made the slowest start, somehow turned out to be the most vigorous by September, well rooted and very dark green in color....nice! Those were followed in size by anemone flowered, then double red, when the anemone flowered was the first to germinate....all rec'd the same conditions.

I also found a few black areas on a couple of older leaves on the anemone flowered types, but thought that may have been from overhead watering...those particular plants are on a lower shelf of a tiered plant rack and like you, I also cut them off. No more spotted foliage has appeared so far...and the only insect problem I had turned out to be a cutworm hiding in one of the pots. I had severely munched leaves on about 3 seedlings, went out at night with a flashlight, found and dispatched him.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2003 at 10:05PM
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I found Mrs. Betty Ranicar a slow starter too, along with the pink anemone. For me, the spotted and picotee were quicker to germinate. I wish I could keep mine out, but some advise I received was that it would be better to bring them in this year because of our cold winters (we already had temps down to 19 one night in early November!). I plan on planting out in the spring.

This year I am trying more of the named varieties plus some of the reds and of course more of Mrs. Betty Ranicar. Hope my beginners luck continues as I was pretty proud to get germination. The website with the pictures has turned out to be very addictive! Hope we can get seeds this year without too much trouble getting them through to US.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2003 at 7:43AM
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jgwoodard(USDA z7 TN)

They are all healthy now. I have all of them planted in the ground except H. lividus 'Rachel' (and these will go in the ground in spring to determine their eventual fate).
Interesting about the germination and vigor results. The fastest to germinate and grow for me were the caulescents (like 'Rachel')
...of the hybridus, the anemone pink was by far tops in terms of growth rate, Klose and Mrs Betty tie for second, then all the rest have done about equal to each other.
....then, of course some of the acaulescent species were slower, particularly multifidus examples and niger.

    Bookmark   November 24, 2003 at 3:58PM
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jgwoodard(USDA z7 TN)

I decided to put most of the lividus 'Rachel' plants in the ground after they showed no signs of leaf damage in pots after a hard frost at 20 F with no cover. We will see how they deal with longer periods of cold and colder temps. They were intended as an experiment anyway.
As for seedlings, I did not discard the pots I used for germinating after I transplanted all the various seedlings...just left them outside. So, now I see cotyledons emerging from all various kinds....a smaller "second crop" of E. town seedlings are emerging.

    Bookmark   November 29, 2003 at 1:06PM
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I have also not given up on the seeds I planted lasted January, perhaps I will see some more germination also. I did have one more Mrs. Betty Ranicar emerge later than the rest, so this prompted me to hold onto the rest of my flats.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2003 at 10:07AM
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I must not have done something right as I had very little germination from mine at all. The most germination came from the free seeds he gave.
We had one of the most rainy springs here that I have ever seen. My seeds were outside in pots and probably spent many days drenched.
I had only wanted to get some picotee to start, but those are the very ones that did nothing or came up very tiny and died off.
I would love to see picutres some day of the flowers that you all get from those plants.

    Bookmark   November 30, 2003 at 7:42PM
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claysoil(z6 PA)

Goodness Terry, I have not yet given in to purchasing seeds, prefering to experiment with my own. But after reading these posts, I just had to go to Elizabeth Town and make a list! As someone else pointed out, the first wait is 3 years for a bloom, so you've got to start something each year. The sooner I start, the better, eh? LOL!

    Bookmark   December 2, 2003 at 6:46PM
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Has anyone heard from John Dudley lately as to when he will be sending out seeds? I hope we will have success getting them past the quarantine authority without it costing an arm and a leg! It should make January lots of fun.

One of these days I am going to master attaching pictures and when I do I will post the pictures Mary.

    Bookmark   December 2, 2003 at 9:18PM
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morz8(Washington Coast Z8b)

I've been in touch with him this week and he didn't give date....Just said soon. I rec'd last winters order on Jan 18th so I wasn't really planning on having seeds before the holidays, and it gives me something to look forward to after!

    Bookmark   December 2, 2003 at 11:40PM
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I am new to growing helleborus and put my order with ETH
No date as when seeds going to be sent.
Reading about all your successful plants makes me lightheaded ;)

    Bookmark   December 8, 2003 at 6:04PM
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Last year was the first time I tried growing hellebores from seed, actually I don't have any in the garden. It surely made winter better. I had good beginners luck and hope this year will be the same. I can't believe it, but I think I now have three new seeds germinating from last January's planting!

It is getting pretty cold and the room I have them in has dropped down to about mid thirties (no heat). When we got down to the teens I covered them with some newspaper at night. Will this be ok for plants this young?

    Bookmark   December 8, 2003 at 11:00PM
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I can't believe it, I was checking my hellores today and now have an additional 2 seeds sprouting! This makes five more plants from what I started last January. Guess it paid to hold onto those pots and water them all summer long!

    Bookmark   December 13, 2003 at 3:00PM
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carlos(zone 6 CT)

I sent elizabeth town an e- mail message and got no response, does anybody knows or have a link to their web site?

    Bookmark   December 28, 2003 at 9:14PM
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morz8(Washington Coast Z8b)

Hi Carlos...Here's the link. But either John or Corrie Dudley will most likely get to your answer when they have time if your email was delivered. (and you didn't get one of those subsystem transcript notice of undelivered mail)

They are busy this time of year, but if you don't hear from them in a reasonable amount of days, I wouldn't hesitate to email again. Nice people!

Here is a link that might be useful: Elizabeth Town

    Bookmark   December 29, 2003 at 3:12AM
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carlos(zone 6 CT)

the problem with their web site is that there is just one page of welcoming but nothing else. I mean no prices, no links of any kind, no places to click to see any other info than the first page. M'I missing something hear?

    Bookmark   December 29, 2003 at 1:08PM
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morz8(Washington Coast Z8b)

I'm not sure what problem you might be having. By clicking on the boxes at the top of the page linked above, you should be able to find price list, order form, contact info....It's active for me from my earlier post.. ???

    Bookmark   December 29, 2003 at 2:43PM
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claysoil(z6 PA)

All of the links worked for me, but I was unable to fill out the order form. I'm assuming that the rest of you print it out and send it in via snail mail? And do you send actual US currency to pay?

    Bookmark   January 4, 2004 at 11:40AM
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morz8(Washington Coast Z8b)

I emailed them with my wish list, and they responded with a price, which I converted to US Dollars from one of the many helpful wepsites...rounded up to the nearest dollar. I tucked a printed copy of the email and the money into a card and mailed that; they again responded when they received it so I would know it had arrived safely. I did allow for some flexibility with my order, and told John to feel free to subsitute where necessary.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2004 at 1:16PM
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claysoil(z6 PA)

Thanks MorZ8. Now another question. How long ago did you all plant these seeds? Other sites are saying 18 months, but these seeds from ET are fresh, so any difference?

    Bookmark   January 11, 2004 at 2:56PM
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morz8(Washington Coast Z8b)

The Tasmanian seeds from the Dudleys arrive in their first warm period, packaged in moist vermiculite. Very helpful that they have begun the process, and I think that is why their seeds are so successful. I immediately planted mine last year when rec'd in January and placed the seed pots outdoors in this mild Z8 where our temps will roughly mimic (an average) that of your refrigerator. I think it would also have been fine if I'd left them unplanted in their baggies at room temperature for several more days.

It was about 8 - 10 weeks before they began to germinate after being placed outdoors, and germination continued for about a month. When several days had passed without further germination, I transplanted seedlings into individual pots and grew them on until October when they were of a size they could go into the ground in this milder climate. (Those seedlings were buried under several inches of snow, followed by an equally unusual ice storm last week and emerged with the thaw looking no worse at all for their experience)

    Bookmark   January 12, 2004 at 1:15AM
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