Monday, 23 January 2012

Hooray for Hellebores, (and other gems)!

Hellebores, like snowdrops bring a cheerful and colourful display to a winter garden. When we moved to our new house there were many plants already in the, once beautiful but sadly overgrown borders. It was evident that the previous owner had been something of a skilled plantsman but advancing years had prevented the upkeep and we now have something of a faded delight.

A patch of Helleborus Foetidus taking up residence
in our, 'woodland' garden.

Helleborus Foetidus as a monochrome exercise

Hard work over the last couple of years has brought forth some little treasures, including the Hellebores that now inhabit the shaded area beneath an old Poplar tree. Having tackled Helleborus Foetidus, (yes, the name rather suggests that this plant has a stinky reputation), for an early monochrome assignment, I feel ready to have a crack at Helleborus Niger in all it's colourful glory, with it's glossy, palmate leaves and large flowers. However, this will have to wait until I finish those snowdrops. Speaking of which...

Here we go again. Hopefully I will get further without disaster

This is the second attempt at snowdrops as an, 'incident' put paid to the first one. I will spare you the gory details but needless to say a poorly placed dirty water jar was the culprit. Ah, well it happens to us all I dare say and I just started again. Good thing I still had the tracing.

With buds galore these are bound to give a lovely display

This plant came as something of a surprise. We found Sarocococca doing badly in a neglected corner and shifted it to a more open spot. The plant has somewhat insignificant leaves that provide a useful evergreen layer but it is the flowers that are the true bonus. They are small and not at all showy but the smell, my goodness. Spicy, strong and exotic, one to paint I think.

A great little evergreen, Sarcococca or 'Christmas Box'
has magnificently fragrant little flowers followed by berries


Janene said...

It's so refreshing to see the winter blooming plants in your garden. I have some of the same plants but they are not doing much yet, although I hope to see some blossoms before too long. I like your tonal study and you have a lovely beginning on the snowdrops. I look forward to seeing the finished version.

Sketchbook Squirrel said...

Thanks Janene, hopefully the snowdrops will be done soon and I can start on that ever-growing list. Fingers crossed that we don't get a frost. :)

Hedera said...

I'm fond of Hellebores and your monochrome drawing is very elegant. Good luck with your second study. :)