While snowdrops flowers are continuing to appear apace in the Rock Garden. The few rays of sunshine this week have encouraged some of the Hellebores in the Woodland Garden to open their nodding flowers.

These clump forming perennials can tolerate sunshine and partial shade, so we have them in many of the beds in the Woodland Garden. Although flowers of many of the species do tend to nod downwards, it is worth getting down to ground level to take a good look at their intricate flowers.

The noraml flower colour for Helleborus orientalis Helleborus orientalis 20091439A compressed

Helleborus orientalis; the normal white flowered form on the left and a very attractive bicoloured form, collected in the Caucasus on the right.

Helleborus cyclophyllus clump 19150026A compressed  H. x ericsmithii 20070252A compressed

These two species could not be more of a contrast. On the left are the brilliant lime green flowers of Helleborus cyclophyllus, while on the right are the dark glaucous leaves, and pure white flowers, of Helleborus x ericsmithii. Surely a genus with something for everyone!