Helleborus ‘Walhelivor’ (Ivory Prince) is a terrific hellebore, with upward facing flowers and distinctive foliage. They look attractive in the garden, from when the snow first melts in spring, until the next winter’s snow covers them up. You couldn’t ask for more from a plant.
The Ivory Prince flowers are very attractive in all stages, from bud to faded bloom. In the above photo you can see the pretty buds, with a delicate pink outside. The buds are large and showy, making a beautiful sight before they even open. When they first appear, shortly after the snow recedes, the flower buds are a deep rose colour, and then the colour lightens as they start to open.
Here is a cluster of flowers that have just opened, most are still buds. Inside the bracts, they are a creamy colour with green tinges. The complex multi-hues of ‘Walhelivor’ blooms make make them interesting to study. The flowers face upwards and sideways, so it is easy to see them, without having to turn the flowers over, unlike many hellebores. The actual flowers are the little part within the large decorative bracts, but the whole package looks like a large flower. After the small flowers inside decline, the sepals continue, so it looks like the flowers last a long time. In zone 3, these flowers start in April and continue until June. They are the first perennials to bloom in spring in my garden.
In the back of the picture above, there are some white Chionodoxa (glory of the snow) bulbs flowering at the same time as the Helleborus. You can also see the decorative burgundy red stems of the hellebore.
This photo shows the beautiful pink striations on the back of these flowers, with a cream border.
Another decorative part of Ivory Prince is the nicely shaded leaves. They have a faint marbling pattern to them, a good shape, and a stiff texture. Surprisingly, these leaves leaves survive under the winter snow, giving a quick start to this zone 3 garden when the snow melts in spring. Even if they didn’t have those pretty blooms, I would still grow the Helleborus ‘Walhelivor’ for the early greenery in a cold climate.