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Fritillaria camschatcensis (photo courtesy of Mark Turner)
Fritillaria camschatcensis (photo courtesy of Mark Turner)

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Zone
Zones A1-A3, 1-7, 15-17, 38-43
Partial Sun
Partial
Regular Water
Moderate

Fritillaria camschatcensis

Black Lily, Chocolate lily
Liliaceae
Bulbs and bulblike plants, Perennials

FRITILLARIA

In spring, unbranched stems ranging from 6 in. to 3 ft. tall are topped by bell-shaped, nodding flowers, often unusually colored and mottled. Use in woodland gardens, rock gardens, or borders.

In fall, plant bulbs in porous soil with ample humus. Set smaller bulbs 3–4 in. deep and 6 in. apart; set largest ones (F. imperialis) 4–5 in. deep and 8–12 in. apart. Bulbs sometimes rest for a year after planting or after blooming, so put in enough for yearly display. All appreciate some winter chill and tend to perform poorly where summers are hot and dry. Reduce watering as foliage dies back in summer. Once it is gone, withhold water from F. biflora until fall. F. meleagris needs moderate to regular water during dormancy; the others require some summer moisture. Clumps seldom need dividing.

Fritillaria camschatcensis

Native near the Pacific coast, Japan to northwestern U.S. Grows to 9–18 in. high, with whorls of leaves around the stem. Flowering stem carries one to eight 1 1/4-in.-long, deep purple to nearly black bells.

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