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COLCHICUM autumnale 'Pleniflorum'

Image of Colchicum autumnale 'Pleniflorum'

Family

Liliaceae

Botanical Name

COLCHICUM autumnale 'Pleniflorum'

Plant Common Name

Autumn Crocus, Naked Ladies

General Description

One of the relatively few hardy "bulbs" to bloom late in the growing season, this European native is certain to brighten any garden. Its double-flowered cultivar 'Pleniflorum' bears numerous lavender-pink, starburst blooms in late summer.

Plump corms (condensed underground stems) covered with papery tunics send up large lance-shaped green leaves in early spring, which provide nourishment to the corm before withering and disappearing in early summer. In the waning days of summer, the flowers emerge on long white floral tubes, creating an unexpected display at a gardening season dominated by yellow, orange and red. Although often called "autumn crocus", it is unrelated to its namesake.

The corms of autumn crocus are usually available for a short period in summer, when they should be planted in a fertile, humus-rich soil in full to partial sun. Often they are planted among evergreen groundcovers such as ivy, creeping juniper, or asiatic jasmine, so that they are all but forgotten until their joyful appearance. They are also great to use in dish gardens and alpine troughs, or in meadows, lawns, or shrub borders.

All parts of this plant are poisonous, so place it where it won't be confused with edible plants or handled by children.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    4 - 9

  • Sunset Zone

    2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Bulb or Corm or Tuber

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    4"-6" / 10.2cm - 15.2cm

  • Width

    4"-12" / 10.2cm - 30.5cm

  • Bloom Time

    Late Summer, Early Fall

  • Native To

    Europe, Russia/Siberia

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam

  • Tolerances

    Drought

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Clump-Forming

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Fall

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Pink, Lavender

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Double

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Container, Cutflower, Feature Plant, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No