COLCHICUM Autumn Crocus

Despite its common name and the shape of the flowers, Colchicum is not related to the true Crocus. In autumn the wineglass-shaped flowers appear, the long tubes at the base of the petals extending down into the earth. The size of the open blooms ranges from 2 to 8 in., depending on the species. When winter comes the flowers are gone, and in spring the untidy large leaves appear.

VARIETIES: C. autumnaie bears 2 in. pink blooms – the prettiest variety is the double-flowering ‘Roseum Plenum’ (pink). The giant is C. speciosum (Meadow Saffron) with mauve flowers which open out to an 8 in. span. It has many netted and striped varieties, such as ‘Violet Queen’ and ‘Lilac Wonder’.

SITE AND SOIL: Well-drained, humus-rich soil is required – thrives in sun or light shade.

PLANT DETAILS: Planting time July-August. Planting depth 4 in.

Spacing: 9 in. Flower height 6-9 in.

Flowering period: September-November.

PROPAGATION: Divide clumps in May – replant at once.

PROPAGATION: Divide clumps in July – replant at once.

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