Sunday, December 16, 2007

Puschkinia... The Little Trooper

I love Puschkinia scilloides var. libanotica dearly; far beyond its small stature and modest visual impact on the garden. Perhaps my affection stems from the fact that it, along with the Siberian blue squill were the first bulbs that naturalized and scattered about when I first began gardening (in Zone 4, in a cold river valley 75 miles north of my present garden). This bulb hails from the Caucasus south through Asia minor (to Lebanon), growing in rocky mountain meadows. Its finely tailored white flowers, dipped in blueing, with a sharp blue line down each petal, now pop up everywhere in my present garden in April, a couple of bulbs having piggybacked in with some other plant brought from my first garden. Puschkinia loves to find little cracks in rockwork, as in the second picture, where it can grow without competition, and dry out in the summer. Scilloides means it looks like a scilla (which it does, often being called the striped squill) and libanotica denotes that this particular variety hails from Lebanon. Of course to even things out, there then is a Scilla puschkinoides, indicating a scilla that looks like a puschkinia! I occasionally see an alba form of Puschkinia scilloides offered, but I can't imagine it's an improvement on the beautiful blue accents of the common flower.
I can tell you that this is an absolutely dynamite little flower grown with yellow crocuses of the same bloom time. I can also tell you that unless your garden is waterlogged clay, that once you have this little bulb in your garden you will always have it... and that's not a bad thing.
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That is beautiful. I can almost hear Danny Thomas singing "Oh Danny Boy..." ;-)

What fun you have watching for your great variety of Spring bulbs to flower!
I like Puschkinia so much! But it don' t has little bulbs like Chionodoxa for example.
Have a nice week Wurzerl
I love this little bulb! I planted several at my sister's grave, & they bloom when all the other graves are bare & have spread so prettily. In fact, last Spring my aunt called me to find out what it was because she wanted to plant some by my uncle's grave. It's not the most common of the little bulbs, but it has such charm.
That is beautiful!
It's funny that some snooty garden writers look down on this little bulb; I'm with all of you... I just adore it.
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