Sunday, February 11, 2018
Hellebores, the Gardener's Guide to Growing by Graham Rice and Elizabeth Strangman
I may discontinue these book reports but I am still into it for the time being. I have been reading 3 books suggested to me by a young English plantsman-this is the last of those. Also, I have been reading several books about "natural" gardening where the idea is to have flowers in meadows instead of "gardens"-this is not one of those. This is a very thorough and carefully researched book about the taxonomy and culture of hellebores. It was written 25 years ago in England so it lacks up to date information about hellebore growers in the US. Those with outward or upward facing flowers may not be so good in the UK with so much rain but I prefer them as they seem to show up the best in the garden. It turns out that the hybrids most commonly available are not H. niger x H.orientalis as I thought as those 2 species do not cross readily. Mentioned in passing is something a young English plantsman, Sam Pagett, told me: seedings are much more vigorous than clones from divisions which is why so many available are strains. Personally, I thinks Christmas rose, H.niger, is the hardiest up here but many of the "x hybridus" hellebores make it. I don't think H.foetidus is hardy here which is too bad. Many people are becoming addicted to Helleborus.