Advanced Search Filters

Plant Type
Hardiness Zone
Heat Zone
Sunset Zone
Function
Sun Exposure
Soil Moisture
Water Requirement

COLCHICUM 'Violet Queen'

Image of Colchicum 'Violet Queen'

International Flower Bulb Centre

Family

Liliaceae

Botanical Name

COLCHICUM 'Violet Queen'

Plant Common Name

Hybrid Autumn Crocus, Hybrid Meadow Saffron

Special Notice

This entry has yet to be reviewed and approved by L2G editors.

General Description

Fragrant, checkered pink-violet blooms of 'Violet Queen' appear in earliest fall (rather than in spring like those of most other "bulbs"). Although sometimes called "autumn crocus," it is not related to the genus Crocus, which is in the iris family.

This hardy perennial produces large broad strap-shaped leaves in spring, which gather energy for the underground bulb-like storage organ, known as a corm. In late summer, about three months after the pointed leaves have withered, numerous starry flowers arise on pinkish violet, ankle-high, stalk-like floral tubes. The rather weak tubes are prone to flopping. Appearing early in autumn, the fragrant blooms have six narrow and pointed segments, opening wide in bright sun to reveal a checkered pattern. The large rounded corms may double or even triple in number each year, eventually forming a broad clump that provides a spectacular fall show.

Colchicums do best in full to partial sun and deep, moist, fertile, well-drained soil. The corms are often planted under low groundcovers like creeping juniper or ivy, which provide a green background and support the blossoms during wind and rainfall. This lovely perennial also is perfect for bringing new life to the late-season perennial garden or shrub planting. It works well in meadows and non-mown lawns. The corm will bloom even if not in soil! Purchase the corms in mid- to late summer, so they can be planted before they bloom.

All parts of Colchicum contain the potent alkaloid colchicine; see http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/hort/consumer/poison/Colchau.htm

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    5 - 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

    7"-9" / 17.8cm - 22.9cm

  • Width

    5"-10" / 12.7cm - 25.4cm

  • Bloom Time

    Early Fall

  • Native To

    Hybrid Origin

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, Violet

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Coarse

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Alpine, Container, Cutflower, Foundation, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No