Family: Liliaceae

Scientific Name: Fritillaria imperialis Rubra Maxima

Common Name: Fritilarria Rubra Maxima

DescriptionA stately plant that produces a large cluster of orange flowers. Will reach 24"-30" in height.
Plant TypeBulbs, corms, tubers, rhizoms, etc.
Hardiness Zone5
Soil & SiteSome sources list the soil requirements as rich well drained others as well drained and rather poor. In my experience the well drained aspect seems to be the most important. Planting in water logged soils will lessen the chances for success.
Flowersclusters, pendent, burnt orange red with deep maroon veins, ear-like drops of nectar form at the tips of edges of the petals, musky smell but doesn't seem to be bothersome unless you stick your nose in the flower or a light breeze wafts the smell away from the flower, flowers are topped with a cluster of pineapple-like leaves
Leavesforms a single stalk, bottom half is surrounded with whorls of glossy, strap-like leaves, stem is bare above the leaves until it merges with the cluster of pendant flowers. In the early spring the tip emerges as a bronze colored spear
StemsBulbs are large, with scales and somewhat smelly. The smell is maybe an evolutionary trait to keep away pests. Stem is bare above the leaves until it merges with the cluster of pendant flower
Dimensions24"-36" tall
MaintenancePlant 8" deep 1-2 bulbs per square foot. Plant a drift of 3 bulbs 10"-12" on center for an imposing display. This is a rather expensive bulb but well worth the cost
Notes & Reference#57-Spring Flowering Bulbs (Dr. A.A. DeHertogh), #59-Naturalizing Bulbs (Rob Proctor), #60-The American Gardeners World of Bulbs (Judy Glattstein), #114-The Gardner’s Guide to Fritillaries (Kevin Pratt, Michael Brown)
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