I went to Ashwood and…


….took some photos!

Today is Hellebore day at Ashwood Nursery, when you can view all their hellebores and have a tour of the nurseries. And, no, I have not joined in. Today is also a Six Nations day (and Valentine’s Day, but that is by the by!) and I don’t think Mr. Chef would deem hellebores a suitable substitute for 30 men chasing an egg shaped ball around a pitch. To be fair, I would think twice, so I had my cake and ate it yesterday instead! I had a sneak preview!

On a cold, wet miserable day, it was the perfect antidote. In the main glasshouse at the nursery, is a huge display dedicated to Winter in Bloom, and is the main display area for their Ashwood hybrid hellebores, along with lots of other lovely winter bloomers. They had masses of Camellias just waiting to burst forth. There were spicy scented Hamamelis, skimmias, winter flowering clematis. There were tiny, jewel-like cyclamens. The highlight, of course, was the Hellebores. Every colour (almost) and marking imaginable!

There were sultry blacks…


… and pure whites.




… And doubles.

Pretty primrose yellows… (this is called “Moonlight”, I believe)


…and frilly pinks.


Some gorgeous sunshine shades, from their ranges with names such as Daybreak, Sunrise and Neon, all beautifully displayed in colour co-ordinated wooden crates…


…or amongst other bright and cheerful winter planting.


What a sunny display – with scent thrown in!

Then there’s all the different markings.



… and even stripes!


Such perfect little faces!



But the star for me was the red one I spotted last month.


From the Rodney Davey marbled group called “Anna’s Red”. Isn’t she stunning?

The show gardens were looking spot on, although some “refurb” seemed to be going on.



And one for the Galanthophiles!


Now, the big question – did I buy anything? Of course I did!


I got the Hamamellis I have been wanting for such a long time. Hamamellis “Imperialis” with lemon yellow flowers, that are much longer than normal, giving a more impressive show. Complete with a sweet, heady scent too!

And I just couldn’t come home without “Anna”!

14 thoughts on “I went to Ashwood and…

  1. Chloris

    What a wonderful post Ali. I have been hoping that you would show us some Ashwood hellebores. They are all so beautiful, how do you choose just one? Actually I think that is the one I would have taken home with me. It is so beautiful and my daughter is called Anna. I love your Hamamelis. It is a new one to me.
    What fun you had, I wish I could have come with you. It is such a long way from here.

  2. thelonggardenpath Post author

    Thank you so much, Chloris. You did put the idea in my head in the first place. As I said, it would be pleasure! I would really have enjoyed it if you could have joined me. If ever you venture this way, do get in touch, and we will do it! I can definitely see why you would have agreed with my choice of hellebore. By the way, I think it may be available to order on-line, if you would really like it.

  3. Cathy

    It’s good to see such a huge range – I met up with ex colleagues yesterday at a garden centre I only go to for that purpose and they seemed to be pushing only ‘Candy Love’ which I had from them one of the previous times we met up there and which didn’t survive. That double white one is gorgeous and I am intrigued by the one with the red rim. The hamamelis with the larger flowers are particularly lovely, aren’t they?

  4. thelonggardenpath Post author

    What a poor show! Ashwood, obviously, showed mainly their own hybrids, but they did have some others on sale as well – the one I chose from the Rodney Davey marbled group, as well as a beautiful blush pink, Harvington hybrid. The one you picked out, with the red edging really caught my eye – I would love to see that fully open! I agree with you about the Hamamelis flowers – so striking!

  5. casa mariposa

    I will be so glad when mine are unfrozen and begin to bloom. The fancier hybrids are expensive here. Most of my hellebore are a bit plain but still a cheerful sight in late winter.

  6. thelonggardenpath Post author

    HI. In our garden, the buds have been defiantly sulky, and are just beginning to come round and start to open, with the milder weather. Sorry, I don’t know where you are, but I do hope it unfreezes soon, for you to enjoy them. Hellebores can be a bit pricey here, too, but they are well worth every penny! I love all the strong colours and foliage at a time when everyting else can be quite delicate.

  7. thelonggardenpath Post author

    I agree! That may be my job for today – planting her amongst the Dogwoods. She is still in her pot at the moment, on the garden table looking even more red and floriferous than when I bought her. Visible from the house, you can see why I’ve been in no hurry to plant her out!

  8. Bec

    Thank you for such a lovely post – the dark ones look great – I like hellebores – only got one in my mancunian garden which is showing no signs of flowering – fingers crossed its soon

  9. thelonggardenpath Post author

    Thank you, Bec! There are so many, sumptuous colours available in hellebores, but the dark ones are gorgeous. They create such a stunning contrast to all the pastel yellows, blues and pink shades around at this time. Mine seem to have been in bud for ages and are only opening up now. I’m sure yours will flower soon. You’re not much further north than us!


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