Het Wilgenbroek, Helleborus 'Top Farmer
Plant Center Het Wilgenbroek is a leading Helleborus nursery with international fame. Het Wilgenbroek is intensively involved with new selections of Helleborus and has achieved fame in this field. We are very proud of what this Belgian company has achieved worldwide.
Design ELS GEERDENS - PHOTOGRAPHY KURT DEKEYZER STUDIO PSG FOR FLEUR CREATIF
Plants and Cut Flowers
Until now, the focus has mainly been on 'plant selections'. But currently, cut flower growers are also asking for the creation of new selections that are good for long-life Helleborus cut flowers. We are also working hard on this. Het Wilgenbroek has already set up several trials together with a few growers. It should be possible to bring new selections to the market within a few years with colored flowers that can be kept for at least 1 month as cut flowers!
Creations Rita Van Gansbeke, photography Kurt Dekeyzer Studio PSG; with thanks to Fleur Creatif
Helleborus Is a Fixed Value in Contemporary Art
And this has everything to do with the naturalness of the plant. The flowers are best used when they are in bloom in nature. Hellebore does not like to be forced, although many growers do this to have flowers for Christmas Day.
Selections that bloom naturally are therefore best suited to use in flower arrangements. Certain Niger varieties (Christmas rose) naturally bloom before Christmas. This is the best known Helleborus, but there are now selections that have a longer shelf life in flower arrangements. Especially plants obtained by crossing different types of Helleborus such as Helleborus Candy Love, Helleborus Snow Love, Helleborus Emma. They have shown last winter to be among the real pinnacles of plants that can be used in flower arrangements.
Why Are These Plants Suitable for Flower Arrangements Now?
The plants have sturdy and long stems. The flowers do not fade and can be stored for at least 1 month in water. The color is limited to white - sometimes with a pink discoloration, but this is ideal in the winter period.
All Other Selections Can Also Be Used in Early Spring
The stem-flowered Helleborus: H. Argutifolius, H.x Sternii, and H. Foetidus: these selections have great ornamental value due to their cluster-shaped flowers. The fresh green flowers of Argutifolius and Foetidus are very easy to process in green-white flower arrangements. They give a natural look to the bouquet. H.x Sternii has more red coloration and is therefore ideal for the Valentine period.
The flowers are cluster-shaped on a sturdy stem. The plants can also be kept well in water, but do not cut the trusses when they are just starting to bloom. It is better to cut it when the plants have finished flowering. The flowers still remain nice and fresh green because a Helleborus has no petals but sepals. A sepal does not wither and remains on the plant. There is discoloration to green, but this also has its charms.
More known are of course the Orientalis hybrids. They are available with white to black flowers. Unfortunately, the flowers do not keep well on floral foam and are therefore best processed with water tubes into which the flower stem is inserted. That way, the flowers can be preserved for at least one week.
The wide variety of flower colors offers many possibilities for the florist to create colorful, natural flower arrangements in the winter or spring period with flowers that people see blooming in their garden at the same time. You can bring the garden into the living room with it. The red selections of Helleborus orientalis are also well suited for Valentine's Day. They are specially selected for their strong flower stem.
It is best not to put these selections in direct sunlight too much. The aforementioned selections such as Candy Love and Emma, on the other hand, can withstand the bright sun very well.
What Will the Future Offer for Helleborus?
In the near future, many new selections will be launched specially created for floral art. Selection is based on the durability of the flowers and also the sturdy flower stem.
The processing of natural material is a must for every florist. Using seasonal plants in compositions or bouquets creates a little bit of garden in the living room.
Helleborus Days and Helleborus Award
Every year in February, the nursery organizes open door days where Helleborus is in the spotlight. As a visitor, you can admire and buy the latest varieties of Helleborus. Het Wilgenbroek is creating a special Helleborus garden especially for this occasion, full of ideas to create or renew your own garden. In addition, each year they invite a top florist to work creatively with Helleborus. For 2021, the honor goes to Belgian champion Stefan Van Berlo. On the theme of "Simplicity", Stefan will provide a beautiful creation that can be admired for a whole month.
For the 7th time, Het Wilgenbroek is also organizing the Helleborus Award in 2021. A competition in which up to 25 professional florists get the chance to bring their creativity to light with Helleborus.