Fritillaria imperialis

Spring always brings surprises.  Leaves that are normally green unfurl red, tight buds open to a flurry of petals and leaves, that which was hidden suddenly smiles at the sun.  This is such a plant.  This fritillaria seems almost tropical and out of place in our Northern land of daffodils and tulips.  It reminds me of a pineapple or a palm tree.  A disturber of the peace.  A surprise!  I saw it growing at the nursery in a display garden and it was a beautiful spring surprise.  When I hear the word fritiallaria I usually think of the little checkered lily.  They are intriguing and cute, but not as striking as the Fritillaria imperialis which seems to be the queen of the garden.  I was curious as to where to buy this royal plant and found them at White Flower Farms, three bulbs for $33.95, shipped in the fall.  What a nice birthday surprise for someone born in the spring!


Crown Imperial Fritillaria

Just the Facts
Fritillaria imperialis    Crown Imperial
Family Liliaceae
Height 3-4 ft. (1m)
Blooms April-May, Orange, Red or Yellow
Unpleasant odor
Zones 5-8
Full Sun to Part Shade
Native to SW Asia

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