Friday, 20 April 2018

Fritillaria meleagris

I always look forward to the arrival of the delightful Snakeshead fritillaries in our garden where they can now be seen in great abundance. Knowing how rarely they are seen in the wild these days makes me feel particularly protective of this precious lily. Checking on them today revealled four naughty red lily beetles who had already sought them out, but they were promptly vanquished. In a matter of days four could become many and then they would all start descending on my newly emerging summer lilies. I had thought that the cold winter might have killed the beetle's lavae, but I was mistaken.
The pretty Erythroniums have also arrived on the scene in yellow, white, and pink, they too are members of the lily family - this one is called pagoda, but luckily they are not preyed on by the lily beetle
Judging by the blossom I am anticipating making delicious plum jam, plum pies, and plum crumble during the fruiting season.

34 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. They always give me a great deal of pleasure when I see them appear again each Spring.

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  2. Your garden is so very pretty! Even the plum blooms are gorgeous. I think you are going to have a great crop this year to cook with. ;-)

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    1. The crop, hopefully, will be good Catherine.

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  3. It all looks delightful but I especially like the Fritillaria. I just googled them and see they are available here. I must check and see if they will grow this far north.

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    1. They do like to keep their feet moist.

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  4. So colourful, delicate and beautiful!

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    1. I love to see their pretty heads nodding on their long elegant stem.

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  5. I love flowers in a "checkered". They are beautiful. Regards.

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    1. They are the only flowers that I know of that have such pretty checkered petals.

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  6. Beautiful blooms.
    Pity about that beetle being about, some insects thrive in the cold where others of course die.

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    1. It appears that they are definitely here to stay. Once the warmth and sun arrived so did they.

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  7. Dear Rosemary,
    your plants are beautiful! I too have Snakeshead fritillaries in my garden, though not as many as you seem to have. I once heard that they like a slightly wet soil. The soil in my garden is rather dry so I did only plant to of them. Interestingly, they come back year for year, even in super dry spots in which other plants would´t thrive. I am thinking about planting some bulbs in my lawn in autumn to get a meadow effect. I also have another fritillaries variety in my garden -Fritillaria assyriaca. I bought it in bloom last spring and has come back this spring.
    Enjoy your lovely spring garden!
    Best wishes,
    Lisa

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    1. Dear Lisa - I think that I must have at least a couple of hundred fritillaries all grown from just a few plants. My garden is very dry but it is the winter moisture that keeps them happy. In this country they grow wild in the meadows so planting them in your grass should keep them happy. There is a meadow near here filled with thousands - the River Thames runs along side it and floods the meadow during the winter and they love it. I used to have Fritillaria assyriaca too but appear to have lost it.

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    2. Dear Rosemary,
      thanks for the encouragement! I have never seen them in the wild here in Austria. In winter the soil in my garden is moist too, so I guess I should indeed give it a try to grow them in grass.
      Best wishes,
      Lisa

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  8. I used to have fritillaries in my UK garden - they grow wild here

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    1. There is a flooded meadow just near here at Cricklade which is full of fritillaries holding the largest wild collection in the UK. I have just checked out their website but they are not ready for viewing just yet as the meadow is still too boggy for visitors.

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  9. Hello Rosemary, Your garden flowers are indeed beautiful but it is the fruit blossoms that excite me most. If I owned land I might plant only fruit trees! I'll bet the Brogdale Fruit Trials get a lot of visitors about this time--have you seen Brogdale in blossom?
    --Jim

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    1. Hello Jim - I have never been to Brogdale in Kent but there is a famous Blossom Trail near here which has a 40-mile route weaving its way through the Vale of Evesham to see the apple, pear, and plum trees which transform the landscape into a riot of colour each year.

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    2. It sounds magical--I don't know whether I'd prefer traveling that route in the spring or in the fall!

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    3. It is lovely in both the spring and the autumn.

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  10. Beautiful, nature is blooming at last now.

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    1. I think that we are relieved to see the sun and the flowers again following this past winter.

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  11. Your garden must look gorgeous at the moment judging by those photos. I must be on the look out for lily beetle this year too, we had quite a few last year. Enjoy your weekend. B x

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    1. Loving the garden at the moment Barbara - it seems to have been such a long wait this year. The Lily Beetle is enemy number one here.

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  12. Dainty flowers. I love the beautiful plum blossom. Enjoy it all, as sunny days seem to have come your way!

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    1. Thanks Betty - so pleased to feel the warmth of the sun again.

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  13. Replies
    1. Thank you for visiting Maria and for your kind comment.

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  14. Such pretty flowers.....dare we hope spring has arrived? Xx

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    1. I think that spring has put her foot too far inside the door now to retreat.

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  15. Don't see many Frits at all up here in the north but I passed a garden yesterday that must have had some sort of traditional wild flower meadow mixture sown into it as it had frits, pansies, catkins, and a range of other 1950s style spring cottage garden types growing through the grass too numerous and varied to be a natural occurrence. Hard work keeping a garden looking 'natural' at times.

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    1. I have seen plenty of Erythroniums growing in Aberdeen. My son and his family lived there for a few years, and that is where I first saw them growing.

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