I Love the Lenten Rose, aka Helleborus orientalis

Apr 3, 2020 | Love This!

Name: Helleborus orientalis aka the Lenten rose, or Lenten rose hellebore

Type of Plant: A perennial for part to full shade. Hardy in zones 4 to 9, and growing best in a neutral pH soil, these plants often self-sow and naturalize.

Why I Love/Hate this plant: Flowers in late winter or early spring? Semi-evergreen perennials? Showy flowers with calyx that last a long time? How could you not love this plant?

A Word to the Wise: Since these are in flower in the time when we’re only outside briefly, be sure to place them where you’ll see them either from a window or when you go in and out of a door.

Although most Helleborus are evergreen, the foliage can look a tad winter-worn when they’re in flower. Don’t hesitate to cut off leaves that are browned or tattered. The plants will not only be more attractive, but they will also be stimulated to grow new, fresh foliage in the growing season.

You can find hellebores in the nursery from November though May.

Some are white, others yellow, pink or even a dark purple!

This is a good example of how these Lenten roses have winter-worn leaves when they flower. Don’t hesitate to cut the unattractive foliage to the ground while leaving the flowers and attractive growth.


  1. Jane A. MacKenzie

    What a lovely flower, the Lenten rose. If they have self seeded when can you dig up and transplant the new plants?

    • CL Fornari

      Yes, you can move them when they are small. They self-seed quite frequently!


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