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Hellebores article


There is a great article in todays Telegraph gardening section about Hellebores, even telling you how to breed them so i thought someone might be interested on here to know how am going to have a go when mine flower.

Select 2 plants that you like the look of and you think will make an excellent mix:- i.e. one is a lovely colour and one could be very sturdy with upstanding stems, or have an impressive flower

When it first opens select the one you want as your mother plant(this will dominate the offsprings characteristics) While the male stamens are still tight and well before they ripen and any pollen is released, take some sharp dissection scissors (?) and cut off all the stamens. The stigma will then be left bald in the centre of the flower. With a soft paintbrush move some pollen from the father plant and gently brush onto the stigma of the mother.

Label the plant cross with the mother written first and with the label attatched to just that one flower neck as the stem may go on to produce more flowers.

Wait for the seed pod to swell and then bag it in a cotton bag(allows for air circulation) with the label inside.

Collect the seed in June and sow strainght away into a pot or tray with a little gravel on the soil surface when the seeds start coming up the gravel helps breakthe seed casing

Leave the container outside (in a cold frame or against a wall, but beware of Mice!!) as the seed needs summer heat followed by frost to encourage germination, this should happen about Christmas time.

Prick out early in the new year when seed leaves are big enough to handle, don’t wait until the true leaves appear as they will have formed a lot of root by then and resent the disturbance.

Pot on stroger growing garden hybrids into a 1 litre pot in June and a 3 litre pot next March.

Pot on species crosses into a one litre pot in June the following year when their roots have filled their pots. They are much slower growing without all that hybrid vigour.

If anyone has a go would they let me know how they get on? I will post photos on progress when mine flower, will probably be next year though as they are only young!!

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Let us know how you get on.........

28 Mar, 2009


Too late for me this year - they've all done it themselves.
Appreciate all the info though, thanks.

29 Mar, 2009


I'd like to have a go but mine are finishing now aswell. Next year now.

29 Mar, 2009


it is late isn't it you'd have thought they would have put this in earlier so we could have a go!

31 Mar, 2009


Try next year :o)

31 Mar, 2009

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