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Plant Spotlight: Scilla (Siberian Squill)

March 31st, 2009

These lovely little Scillas (Siberian Squill) bloom beautifully each year. They’re actually one of the first things to bloom each spring in my gardens. These were planted 4 years ago and they have comes back each year (unlike some tulips).
They have tiny little flowers that appear while the stems are still short and then the stems grow longer. Since these plants look best en masse, plant in groups with around 20 per square foot. These small bulbs can also be planted on top of deeper-planted spring bulbs, such as daffodils and tulips (although I think I like them by themselves).
Scillas will grow in a shady spot, as long as the shade is produced by deciduous trees that lose their leaves in the winter. Since scillas come up early in the spring they will get sun in a spot that is shaded in the summer. This makes them a very versatile plant for those shady spots that might not be able to have blooms the rest of the summer.
Like most bulbs, Scillas do best in soils with good drainage and an lots of organic matter, in wet soils the bulbs can rot. The small bulbs are planted in the fall, 2 to 3 inches deep and 2 to 4 inches apart. I like these so much, I’m hoping to add some more of these to my gardens this fall, I may try to find some white and pink ones.
Another plus is that they’re deer resistant, which is a huge plus here at Chiot’s run, since the deer eat most of my tulips each spring. I like to invest in flowers, not deer food.

What are your favorite spring bulbs?

12 Comments to “Plant Spotlight: Scilla (Siberian Squill)”
  1. bangchik on March 31, 2009 at 7:18 am

    Such a lovely blue thing …. cheers! ~ bangchik

    bangchik’s last blog post.. Flowers: color of patriotism

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  2. Bridgett on March 31, 2009 at 8:16 am

    Great pics of a gorgeous flower! That is one I have not seen. Don’t you just love blue flowers for their uniqueness? It kind of reminds me of streptocarpus with its long stems and dainty flowers. That’s an annual but it is my favorite one :)

    Bridgett’s last blog post.. Artisan Bread in Five Minutes Project Part 2

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  3. Seren Dippity on March 31, 2009 at 10:00 am

    Beautiful blue flowers. Do you know if the bunny rabbits will leave them alone? I don’t have the deer issue, but have _herds_ of wild bunnies.

    Reply to Seren Dippity's comment

    • Susy on March 31, 2009 at 8:03 pm

      I have lots of bunnies as well and they don’t bother these little bulbs, so I think you would have success as well.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  4. ChristyACB on March 31, 2009 at 11:51 am

    Those are just so delicate and beautiful! Great photos!

    ChristyACB’s last blog post.. Strawberry Patch and a Matching Dehydrator

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  5. Karen on March 31, 2009 at 12:03 pm

    Is this different than the regular scilla? I have millions of that in my garden, they are kind of a weed. I pull a bunch out every year but they just keep coming back. They do like to grow in my somewhat-crummy soil, so I guess I should be grateful! But they crowd out other bulbs I’ve planted, which I resent. Fav spring bulbs, hm, wish I could remember the varieties of anything I ever plant! I must keep better records this year. Maybe snakeshead fritillary? I only have one or two that come back regularly, and I missed getting more last fall. Love its checkerboard pattern.

    Karen’s last blog post.. Blossom Time

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  6. Syrahsuzie on March 31, 2009 at 2:07 pm

    Being Welsh I have a soft spot for daffodils our national flower and I really miss seeing the wild bluebells.

    Here in France I love the chionodoxa (glory-of-the-snow) that grow wild in the vineyards and the wild iris and the violets that cover my shady garden.

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  7. Pampered Mom on March 31, 2009 at 3:42 pm

    I’ve never heard of Scilla before, but they are so pretty! I’ll have to investigate that this fall as they’d be perfect planted under the maple trees in our front yard!

    Pampered Mom’s last blog post.. Beet Green Gratin

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  8. Dan on March 31, 2009 at 8:04 pm

    Very nice photos Susy, you are very good with your camera. I will have to look for these bulbs this fall. I linked to you on my current post.

    Dan’s last blog post.. Things are getting exciting

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    • Susy on March 31, 2009 at 11:10 pm

      Thanks Dan, my favorite is the second photo down.

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  9. Barbs on May 22, 2009 at 1:49 pm

    Can someone tell me what the pods are that are on the plant at the moment (may). Are they the seeds, or do the bulbs double up like tulips?

    Reply to Barbs's comment

    • Susy on May 22, 2009 at 3:30 pm

      This is what I found on-line:

      Fertilized flowers readily form bumpy, roundish seed capsules that contain several seeds. The pods start out green, but turn brown as they mature, to eventually split to release the reddish-brown seeds. By early summer the foliage has died down, and the little round bulbs, covered in a loose dark tunic, remain dormant in the soil until the next spring.

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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