Hellebores Orientalis dying off..

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Mark Dowling asked 13 years ago

I have a Hellebores Orientalis that done well all last winter under the canopy of a sycamore. This summer it’s health has declined rapidly. I’ve read it should have been kept from Mid day sunlight….its position did leave it open to this.Many leaves appeared scorched and then some blackened and died off. I have acidic soil. I believe it likes lime so I added a small bit earlier..no improvement. I’ve now moved it but I fear now I’ll loose it. Any ideas? Thanks Gerry

1 Answers

Gerry Daly Staff answered 4 years ago
Hellebores prefer lime but grow perfectly well on acidic soils. They like shade but heavy shade, combined with dry soil and root competition can weaken them.

The symptoms you describe would seem to point to a disease rather than a cultural problem. There are two serious diseases of hellebores: leaf spot and hellebore black death

The former is a fungal disease and causes black spots while the latter causes streaking and rotting of leaves. The fungal disease is not too harmful and the old leaves should be cut away in autumn.

The black death disease is a virus and the plants must be destroyed

Cut away the leaves in October and see what happens next year. If it is badly affected it will need to be removed.