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Zone
Zones 7, 14-21
Partial Sun
Partial
Regular Water
Moderate

Fritillaria biflora

Mission Bells
Liliaceae
Bulbs and bulblike plants, Perennials, Flowers

FRITILLARIA

In spring, unbranched stems ranging from 6 in. to 3 ft. high 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 (Fritillaria imperialis) 4–5 in. deep, 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 biflora

California native grows 6–16 in. high, with one to six brownish, 1 1/2-in. bells on each blossom stalk. ‘Martha Roderick’ has rusty orange flowers with a white center.

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