As Hellebores age they change colour. What we see as petals are actually sepals or, even more correctly, tepals, the outer leaf of the flower designed in all probability to protect the bud. The greening process is said to aid photosynthesis and is a process known as senescence, occurring rather like leaves losing their colour in autumn, occasioned by a reduction in proteins and sugars. Here the hellebore in my view is enhanced as the green blooms complement the new pure white ones. I much prefer them to the forms that pink up. Should my shorthand account be insufficiently informative or detailed do read this account that explains the process in more detail than any human being should ever be forced to suffer. Luckily my hellebores, other than the specimen below, are still in bud and some months short of their ‘demise’ so no other green or pink tepals, petals or sepals to tease you with.

Helleborus ‘Verboon Beauty’

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