Don’t be fooled by the Lenten rose.

It may look like a rose but it is not at all related to the rose family. The buttercup family, or Ranunculaceae, claims this plant as its member.

Helleborus orientalis, as it is officially known, loves the shade and usually blooms around the time of Lent.

Pinkish-orange Helleborus orientalis flowers on Spoken Garden's podcast page

In our DIY Garden Minute Ep. 54 – “Helleborus orientalis: A Mini Plant Profile” we’ll explain some general maintenance tips and information regarding these winter-blooming plants.

This episode is meant for any level of gardener who wants to learn how to best care for the Hellebores in their garden.

For a free cheat sheet list of over 15 winter flowering plants click here! 

Winter Flowering Plants

Winter plants not only survive outside in the cold and frosty conditions, they actually produce blooms with colorful flowers depending on the plant!

These perennial plants will brighten up your pots, walkways, and beds with their spots of color in the dead of winter.

Obviously, one example of a winter-blooming plant is Helleborus orientalis, or the Lenten Rose.

Specific varieties include:

 ‘Ice N’ Roses Red’ Lenten Rose

‘Walbertons Rosemary’ Lenten Rose

Mix Color of Lenten Rose

Overall, Hellebores are pretty low maintenance which makes them suitable for any level of gardener, especially beginning gardeners.

As long as they have full to partial shade, they are tough, resilient plants that bloom with elegant, downward-facing flowers.




Helleborus orientalis: Mini Plant Profile Show Notes

Today’s topic is “Helleborus orientalis”

Helleborus orientalis, or as it is more commonly known the “Lenten Rose”.

  • Late-winter blooming into spring.
  • Lenten rose likes to grow in warmer climates. Sunset has it zoned for 2b to 10 and then zones 14 to 24.
  • Grow only about 1-foot tall and 1 ½ feet wide spreading over an area.
  • Flowers are 2 to 4 inches wide on branching stems up to 1 foot tall.
  • Flowers come in white, purple, pink, cream, and greenish.
  • Like almost entirely shaded areas and don’t like to be moved once planted, though this species is more tolerant of transplanting
  • They like to be fertilized once or twice a year with a well-balanced fertilizer.
  • Like neutral or lower pH soils, like most other Hellebores.
  • These plants need moderate to regular watering, meaning not that drought tolerant.
  • Native to Greece, Turkey, and the Caucasus’.
  • If you do end up transplanting them, do it in the spring right after they have finished blooming so they can get reestablished in their new location and possibly set new flower buds before fall and winter.


For other late winter or early spring blooming plants, read our Hellebore plant profile and our Daffodil plant profile!

If you don’t have time to read each one of these, click the links in this episode’s show notes or on this episode’s webpage to download any of our other plant profile sheets available on our Free Resources page!

You can find other one-minute topics on our podcast page at

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We have FREE garden content we are so excited to give to you, like cheat sheets, plant profile sheets, etc! See you there!

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Today’s Topic:

Helleborus orientalis

Learn basic care and maintenance for your Helleborus orientalis, aka Lenten Rose.


Show Notes

7 Winter Flowering Plants Cheat Sheet from our Free Resources Library

What You’ll Learn:

  • Plant profile of Helleborus orientalis, aka the “Lenten Rose”
  • Brief guide to general maintenance, watering needs, etc.


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