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Herbaceous Perennial

Helleborus × hybridus 'Pretty Ellen Red'
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

hellebore 'Pretty Ellen Red'

A semi-evergreen, clump-forming perennial to 35cm tall with dark green, divided leaves. Upright flower stems bear deep reddish purple flowers in late winter and early spring.

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Size
Ultimate height
0.1–0.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
0.1–0.5 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Clay
Loam
Moisture
Moist but well–drained
pH
Neutral, Alkaline
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Red Purple Green
Summer Green
Autumn Green
Winter Red Purple Green
Position
  • Full sun
  • Partial shade
Aspect

North–facing or South–facing or East–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H7
Botanical details
Family
Ranunculaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Semi evergreen
Habit
Bushy
Potentially harmful
Harmful if eaten, skin irritant. Wear gloves and other protective equipment when handling
Genus

Helleborus can be rhizomatous, herbaceous or semi-evergreen perennials forming a clump of pedate basal leaves, or evergreen with erect, leafy stems. Large, bowl-shaped flowers are borne in loose clusters in late winter or spring

Name status

Unresolved

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in neutral to alkaline soils that are moist, fertile and humus-rich. Partial shade is ideal but can tolerate full sun. Provide shelter from strong, cold winds. Mulch annually in autumn. See hellebore cultivation

Propagation

Propagate by division of large clumps, after flowering in early spring, or in early autumn. Propagate by seed in containers in a cold frame as soon as ripe; plants produced from seed may be variable.

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Wildlife gardens
  • Flower borders and beds
  • Underplanting of roses and shrubs
Pruning

Remove faded or damaged foliage as the flowers appear

Pests

May be susceptible to hellebore aphid, slugs and snails

Diseases

May be susceptible to hellebore leaf spot and virus diseases such as hellebore black death

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