Position – Full sun or part shade
Soil – Moist, well-drained
Flowering Period – Summer
Hardiness – Fully hardy to hardy
Fritillaria are bulbous, herbaceous perennial plants with structured spear-shaped leaves and bell-shaped flowers that hang over the foliage like lanterns. Plants of this kind have originated from mainland Europe as well as Western Siberia. Once known as a prominent plant in the UK, numbers have dwindled over the years and they are now extremely rare to spot in the wild. These plants are best suited to flower beds and borders within cottage and informal garden settings. You should expect to see Fritillaria grow to an approximate height of 50cm (20”) and a spread of 10cm (4”).
Fritillaria are best suited to moist, well-drained soil of chalk, clay, clay or loam within an acidic, alkaline or neutral PH balance. It is recommended to amend the planting area with grit and a little compost as this will promote healthy growth whilst improving the overall drainage. Plant Fritillaria roughly 15-20cm (6-8”) deep at equidistant intervals, ensuring you consider its mature spread. Like many other bulbous plants, Fritillaria thrive with cooler root systems. Therefore, it is highly recommended that your plants are kept in a shaded area as they establish where they will tolerate a sheltered area of full sun.
It is essential that you water your plants thoroughly during active growth. This can be reduced as your plants enter dormancy. Once the flowering period ends and the leaves die off you may wish to cut back your stems to just above ground level. Provide Fritillaria with an extensive heavy mulch in winter and replace with a top dressing of compost during the spring.
It is possible to propagate Fritillaria by seed that can be sown in pots during autumn. It is vital that you expose your Fritillaria to the cold weather in winter as this will encourage germination in the spring time. Alternatively, you can divide offsets in the late summer.
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