Hellebores and spring bulbs

Week 15, as we revisit the 10-year anniversary of the book, Slow Flowers

Hellebores, spring bulbs, and a Frances Palmer vase, Slow Flowers 2023
Hellebores, spring bulbs, and a Frances Palmer vase, Slow Flowers 2023
A Floral Welcome from 2013 (Slow Flowers Book)
“A Floral Welcome” from 2013 (Slow Flowers Book)

This week’s arrangement is a bit of a departure from “A Floral Welcome,” which I created for my Slow Flowers book project in 2013. That piece featured Jello Mold Farm-grown Helleborus orientalis and Leucojum aestivum, harvested from my Seattle Garden — arranged in a glass wall vase that I hung on the front door.

Close up detail of Frances Palmer vase
Love the forms of this vase and the flowers it contains. Close up detail of Frances Palmer Pearl vase, produced in the U.S. by the now-closed Buffalo China Factory

I no longer have that clear glass wall vase — it must have been sold off in a garage sale when we moved in 2015. But no worries, the shelves of my home are filled with lovely options, including this buttercup yellow vessel. The fluted, 8-inch tall x 5-inch diameter fluted vase was created by artist Frances Palmer for her Pearl Collection. That collection is no longer available, sadly, but I maintain that this is just the best shape for floral design.

I shopped the Seattle Wholesale Growers Market this week, because I knew that Jello Mold Farm’s hellebores would be available — yes! I love the moody petal palette that is dark plum with notes of green. As a nod to the form of the summer snowflake (Leucojum sp.) used back in 2013, I selected two other dainty, nodding bulb flowers, both grown by Jan Roozen of Choice Bulb Farm: Fritillaria uva-vulpis (note the purple-maroon bells with yellow tips) and Tulip turkestanica (a dainty white species tulip with yellow center).

vertical detail Hellebores and spring bulb arrangement
Note the daffodils in this spring Slow Flowers arrangement

And oh, the daffodils! Nothing to do with the arrangement I created one decade ago, but they looked so vibrant in the garden and I wanted to share them with you. This variety is called Double Tahiti, from Longfield Gardens. The sunny yellow blossoms are decorated with eye-catching, red-orange ruffles — and are long-lasting in the garden and vase.

This arrangement lifts my spirits, and unlike last week’s dreary atmosphere with weak sunlight, the weather cooperated with me yesterday — and I photographed the Hellebores and their companion bulb flowers in the late afternoon glow of an April day.

Debra Prinzing

Debra Prinzing is a Seattle-based writer, speaker and leading advocate for American-grown flowers. Through her many Slow Flowers-branded projects, she has convened a national conversation that encourages consumers and professionals alike to make conscious choices about their floral purchases. Debra is the producer of SlowFlowers.com, the weekly "Slow Flowers Podcast" and the American Flowers Week (June 28-July 4) campaign. Debra is author of 11 books, including Slow Flowers (2013), The 50 Mile Bouquet (2012) and Slow Flowers Journal (2020). She is the co-founder of BLOOM Imprint, the boutique publishing arm of Slow Flowers.

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Slow Flowers Journal is brought to you by SlowFlowers.com. Slow Flowers is an award-winning online directory created to help consumers find florists, studio designers, wedding and event planners, supermarket flower departments and flower farmers that supply American grown flowers. Founded in 2014, the site has grown to 850 members across the U.S.


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For more information, please contact Debra Prinzing
at 206-769-8211 or 844-SLOWFLO (844-756-9356); debra(at)slowflowers.com.