Waning colour in the winter garden? Hellebores are just the thing to brighten it up in an instant.
Hellebores are easy plants to grow, but they do have a reputation for resenting any root disturbance, so try to avoid transplanting them, if possible, and take care when you do.
Late winter and spring are the perfect times to be planning ahead for summer and autumn containers – they’ll need planting up in the coming months. Take a look at these container ideas for sun and container ideas for shade, for inspiration.
Check out these bright and easy hellebore container ideas.
Cool and fresh
The white Christmas rose (Helleborus niger) is the star of this pot, with complementary evergreens planted nearby – we opted for a plain green ivy and a variegated osmanthus. Put this pot in a sheltered, shady spot and pick off the flowers as they start to fade to keep the pot looking fresh.
Other plants to try: variegated euonymus, variegated pieris.
A white hellebore in a container with ivy and variegated holly
The elegantly pointed, grey-blue foliage of this hellebore (‘Silver Dollar’) complements the blue of the violas, while their cheerful yellow faces tie in well with the mini daffodil. You can buy pots of spring bulbs that are already in bud, and ready to plant out, at your local garden centre.
Other plants to try: larger-flowered blue and yellow pansies, blue primroses, yellow crocus.
A hellebore in a planter with ivy, pansies and daffodils
The rich plum colours, so typical of many hybrid hellebores, are brightened by the tomato tones of these polyanthus and the gaultheria berries. Place in a sun or shade and keep well watered in dry weather.
Other plants to try: double red bellis daisies, bergenias, Viburnum tinus.
A red-themed planter of hellebore, polyanthus and gaultheria
The pale purples, pinks and bronzes of this container give it a charming frosted appearance. A leatherleaf sedge forms the backbone of the scheme, while heather, Helleborus ‘Winterbells’ and wood spurge fill out the container.
Other plants to try: pheasant’s tail grass (Anemanthele lessioniana), Cyclamen coum, red-leaved bergenia.
A pale purple, pink and bronze planter featuring hellbore ‘Winterbells’
Plant them out
Most of the plants in these containers, with the exception of the pansies and violas, can be moved to the garden when the display is past its best – they’ll live on happily for years.