Helleborus foetidus


Common Names: Stinking hellebore, dungwort, setterwort, bear's foot
Category: Plants
Sub-category: Buttercup family

It is a herbaceous perennial plant growing to 80 cm tall and 100 cm across, with a thick succulent stem and evergreen glossy leaves. The drooping cup-shaped flowers are yellowish-green, often with a purple edge to the five petal-like sepals on strongly upright stems. The flowers, typically for the family, contain numerous stamens as well as up to ten nectaries which make them attractive to bees and other insects. Each flower produces up to five (usually three) wrinkled follicles. Despite its common name, it is not noticeably malodorous, although the foliage is pungent when crushed.

It is grown in gardens for its handsome evergreen foliage and large numbers of green, bell-shaped flowers borne in late winter. It prefers woodland conditions with deep, fertile, moist, humus rich, well-drained soil, and dappled shade. The species is, however, drought tolerant. It often occurs naturally on chalk or limestone soils. Blooms in spring.

Primary Flower Color: Green
Secondary Flower Color: Green
 
Edible Notes: Poisonous.
Warnings: Poisonous. All parts of the plant are poisonous, containing glycosides. Symptoms of intoxication include violent vomiting and delirium.
Sightings