Description: Hardy, evergreen perennial Light green, bell-shaped flowers, often purple-margined, above large, pale-green bracts; blooms in late winter or very early spring on stout, 12-inch stems
Habit: Leathery, often evergreen leaves grow 1 to 2 feet high. Plants are spreading and long lived
Culture: Generally prefers some shade and deep, rich, neutral or alkaline soils; thick roots resent disturbance
Hardiness: USDA Zones 5 through 9
Attributes: Attracts bees, deer resistant, drought tolerant, evergreen
Gardeners have thought of the lovely hellebores as true harbingers of spring for centuries. Their subtle but charming flowers can bloom even through the snow. The bear's foot hellebore, which is native to central and Western Europe, was cultivated by the late 18th-century gardener Jean Skipwith at Prestwould in southern Virginia. This hardy perennial appears in Philadelphia nurseryman Bernard McMahons book, The American Gardener's Calendar, 1806, under another common name, "stinking bears foot," which implies a malodorous plant. But the fragrance is barely detectable and is sometimes pleasantly scented.
Arrives in a 4" pot.