I have some beautiful Hellebore flowers in bloom in the garden at the moment. The pretty nodding flowers can be hidden by the leaves in the garden. My aim this month was to produce an arrangement which showed off the blooms with their intricate markings and exquisite beauty. Once cut they do have a hard time taking up water and droop easily They can be quite difficult to arrange in a vase. However there are a few tricks that can help.
Using Hellebores in Floral Design Work
Cut the stems and then sear the ends in boiling water for a few seconds.
The age of the flowers play a very important role in the longevity of a cut hellebore. You need to wait until the ovary begins to swell and the stamens and anthers have fallen off. The more developed the seedpod the longer the flowers will last as cut flowers. For artistic purposes I have photographed my hellebore flowers with their stamens and anthers intact so you can see how beautiful they are. However 24 hours later these flowers were very droopy.
Hellebore flowers look wonderful simply floated in a bowl of water. This was last year’s `posy’ of the month.
This year for my `February Posy’ I chose a vintage teacup to float a few blooms in. I love the water lily effect of the fancy, frilly pink flower. `
To ring the changes I decided to also use a vintage flower bowl which belonged to my Gran to show off my hellebore blooms. Whilst I was clearing my Uncle’s house I found this lovely Amber Cloud Glass Flower Bowl Set which was given to my Gran as a wedding present in 1937 by Ethel Marsh. Unfortunately I threw the plinth out as I didn’t realise it belonged to the flower bowl! Cloud glass is a form of pressed art glass, created by applying streaks of dark coloured glass to paler glass, which creates a random swirled, “clouded” pattern. The cloud glass technique was invented by George Davidson & Co in 1923. The Pattern number is 1910SD, 6.75 inches diameter.
Ethel Marsh was a colleague of Betty at the Liverpool Victoria Insurance offices. The stories my Gran recounted about the Liverpool Vic are more to do with the social side than actual work! Betty made many good friends whilst working there, many of whom came to her wedding. In the 1930s a married woman was not expected to work. When Betty got married she was expected to give up her job. During the Second World War women were needed to work whilst the men were away at war. After the war it was more socially acceptable for married women to go out to work. My Gran recounted going on trips away with the Liverpool Vic to Brighton. The offices would be closed and they would all go off to the seaside in a charrabanc. I have pictures of the girls on the beach. Winnie Holland seemed to be a bit of a goer and is showing her knickers whilst paddling!
I am gradually building up quite a collection of Hellebores. I would highly recommend them as they do provide some interest in the garden before the other Spring plants come out in a Blaze of Glory.
Helleborus x ballardiae ‘Candy Love’
Helleborus Winter Sunshine and Candy Love are virtually indistinguishable both having pretty creamy pink flowers. Candy Love does seem to have slightly smaller flowers.
Helleborus x ballardiae Gold Collection Cinnamon Snow
Pink buds open to creamy white flowers suffused with warm rose and cinnamon. Dark cinnamon rose petal on the reverse side. The large blooms face outward.
Helleborus niger Mini Blanc
This one is an early bloomer and can often be seen in flower at Christmas time.
There is an unknown variety in bloom in our front garden.
Helleborus Double Queen
Helleborus × ericsmithii Ice Breaker Max
Large outfacing single creamy-white flowers, with a slight greenish tinge, appear in early spring.
Helleborus x hybridus ‘Molly’s White’
Attractive green marbled foliage all year round with pure white flowers above the foliage. The white flowers turn to lime green with age from December through to early Spring.
Hellebore orientalis Tutu
Pretty pale pink flecked flowers with double pleated dark burgundy anemone like centres that make a really eye-catching display over evergreen foliage from the end of December until Spring.This one is a such a beautiful frilly double form of Lenten Rose it really does remind me of a ballerina’s tutu.
Helleborus (Rodney Davey Marbled Group) ‘Penny’s Pink’
I’d love to know if you have Hellebore flowers in bloom at the moment and if you have a favourite? I would also be interested to hear if you have used them in floral design work successfully.