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Growing Guide Colchicum

Pronounced: kol'chick-um

Sometimes called Meadow Saffron, but bulbs are unrelated to the true Saffron and are, in fact, poisonous. A fact that makes them unpalatable to deer, voles, mice, and other bulb predators.

Large, vase-shaped pinkish lavender, rosy-violet, or white flowers emerge in the fall (September or October), appearing as if by magic, with no foliage visible. Each bulb produces numerous blooms. Hardy in USDA Zones 5-8S, 5-9W

Bulbs are shipped only early in the fall season, beginning the first week of September. Bulbs should be planted promptly on arrival and will bloom the same season. Colchicum prefers full to part sun (shade in hot summer areas), and rich, well-drained soil. Plant bulbs 4" deep, 10-12" apart (figure on 3 bulbs per sq ft).

Suggested use: Among shrubs or low groundcovers, or in a grassy area by a wall or fence, where the foliage will not be mowed prematurely in the spring. Plant in large clumps or sweeps for best effect. In spring,the bulbs produce a spray of coarse leaves, which must be allowed to mature to feed the fall display. The leaves disappear by early summer, but companions must mask or tolerate the foliage.

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