2 years to reach maturity
This plant has a mild fragrance
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Snakeshead Fritillary Overview
Fritillaria meleagris is a bulbous perennial species that typically grows to around 30cm tall, it produces lance-shaped, green-grey leaves and delicate nodding flowers. The flowers are produced early in spring, they have attractive checkered patterning, typically coloured white and purple. The plant's name 'fritillaria' comes from the Latin 'fritillus', meaning dice-box. This presumably refers to the unmistakable chequered/dotted pattern of the flower. This plant was often harvested from meadows in the United Kingdom to be sold for decoration at 16th & 17th Century markets. It is widely naturalised across the UK, however, it is not thought to be a true native species. It is the official flower of the Uppland region of Sweden, where it grows in large quantities every spring.
Common problems with Snakeshead Fritillary
Prone to slugs and lily beetle. Generally disease-free.
How to harvest Snakeshead Fritillary
Allow seed heads to dry on plants, then remove and collect seeds. Properly cleaned, seed can be stored in dry conditions.
How to propagate Snakeshead Fritillary
Sow into pots in a cold frame in autumn as it needs winter cold to initiate germination in spring. Plant 10cm+ apart.
Special features of Snakeshead Fritillary
Commonly found in meadows subject to winter flooding, as well as damp grasslands.
Other uses of Snakeshead Fritillary
Grown as a spring flowering bulb.
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