There are over 100 species of Scilla, but only about half a dozen are widely available commercially. Probably the most commonly cultivated are the Scilla hispanica, or Spanish Bluebells:

Spanish Bluebells

As the name suggests, these flowers are native to Spain (and Portugal) and have beautiful blue, bell-shaped blossoms. What the name doesn't tell you is that they grow and multiply very easily, even in shade, and in almost every type of soil. What ever the opposity of "finicky" is, that is what Spanish Bluebells are. They will even grow where grass won't!

The wild variety is a violet-blue, but cultivated varietes are available in several different shades of blue, as well as pink and white.

Spanish Bluebells are among the tallest of the Scilla. Try them planted behind some of your shorter, earlier-blooming spring bulbs to extend your spring blooming season, and in the more difficult spots in your garden. Just try them; you won't be sorry.

Flowering time:late spring
Plant height: 10 - 18" (25 - 46 cm)
Minimum planting depth:4" (10 cm0
Hardiness zones:suitable for zones 3 - 8
Colours:cultivated varieties are available in pink, white and various shade of blue
wild variety is violet-blue
Shape/form: flowers are shaped like a broad bell with a flared rim
about 12 to 15 flowers hang from a sturdy, round stalk
5 to 6 strap-like leaves per plant
Alternate names:Wood Hyacinth, Scilla hispanica, Scilla campanulata, Endymion hispanicus
Correct Latin name: Hyacinthoides hispanica
Notes:good for rock gardens, beds, borders, among ferns, in woodland gardens, ground covers, or as mass plantings
wild variety is fragrant; cultivated varieties are generally scentless
when planting, add sand or gravel to ensure good drainage, if necessary
Example varieties:Blue Queen (soft blue), Danube (dark blue), Excelsior (blue-violet), Rosabella (violet pink), Rose Queen (rose-pink), White City (white), White Lion (white), White Triumphator (white)

Wild Spanish Bluebell

Hyacinthoides hispanica

Blue Queen White Lion Rose Queen

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Last modified: October 14, 2008