Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Plant Profile: Helleborus orientalis ‘Royal Heritage’


zone 4
24 - 36" tall and wide
blooms: early spring to mid-May

Helleborus orientalis ‘Royal Heritage’ is one of our favorite hellebores and it is one of our grower's showcase plants:

"You always remember those plants that tell you that a long winter is coming to a close and that spring is just around the corner. The most memorable of these plants has to be Helleborus orientalis ‘Royal Heritage’, a great selection of the Lenten Rose that every gardener with a strong desire for spring weather should grow.

Hellebores are a group of plants that have been known to gardeners for many years but have not been the easiest plants to come by mainly due to propagation issues. ‘Royal Heritage’ is a breakthrough in this area due to its relative ease of propagation. Even better, this selection is remarkable in its ability to bloom over a long period of the late winter and early spring while providing an array of colors that will melt the chilled heart of any gardener.

Tough and tolerant with Zone 4 hardiness, ‘Royal Heritage’ presents a formidable profile in the garden with 24” height and a 24 – 36” spread of dark, lustrous, deeply lobed evergreen foliage with serrated edges. Its vigorous nature carries through to its strong flowering habit as a multitude of buds emerge at the first late winter or early spring mild spell ready to open up at the first hint of sustained early spring warmth. When those buds open, your heart will be warmed to the melting point by the nodding, 1.5 to 2” diameter flowers that span a range from white to pastel pink to red to nearly black in color. This amazing rainbow of bloom continues through the early spring and into mid-May.

‘Royal Heritage’ should be in everyone’s garden, after all, who isn’t in desperate need of some landscape color at the end of a tough, brutal winter?? This selection is quite easy to grow needing a partial to full shade spot in the garden, moist, well drained soil, and a good layer of surface mulch to keep it happy and ready to signal spring’s arrival. Plant some today and let ‘Royal Heritage’ be your lasting memory of the joys of spring’s arrival." -from Prides Corner Farms

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