In the winter of 2012/13 we lost a sixty-year-old Austrian pine tree that came down in a December snow storm. It took out a good-sized Washington Hawthorn and a small Magnolia when it fell. I worried that those losses spelled the end of my shade garden with its clumps of mature Hellebores. Most of the Hellebores have done well even though they are now in almost full sun.
But last summer a big clump with red flowers was clearly being stressed by the changed conditions. So I decided to dig it up and move it. Mark suggested putting it in a bed by the house which he thought needed those dramatic Hellebore leaves to perk it up.
I grabbed a shovel and transplanted it to a much shadier location, but one amidst a number of trees and shrubs so lots of root and water competition. I added a second Hellebore next to the first clump but now I can't remember if they were from the same area of the garden. Despite what I consider to be my excellent record-keeping system, some times I really fall down.
Most of the Hellebores in that area of the garden were 'Royal Heritage' strain which is not limited to one color. So now I've got two Hellebores, a known red one and an unknown white one with a pink edge, both up and further along than any others in the garden. Clearly the warmth of the location by the house made up for the shock of transplanting.
Maybe when more Hellebores open elsewhere in the garden I'll be able to figure out the name of this delicate beauty.
Most years my Hellebore leaves look like this group from 'Ivory Prince,' a bit flattened from the snow but still attractive.
This year's cold temps and lack of snow cover mid-winter really flattened and blackened the leaves of most of my Hellebores. The green one on the left is a Thanksgiving blooming Hellebore and the one on the right is so brown and flattened you can barely distinguish it from the surrounding leaves. Time to cut them all off and get on with Spring!