Puschkinia Libanotica (Striped Squill)
Tulips, narcissi, hyacinths, snowdrops…. there are so many beautiful flower bulbs, and they all have their own charm and characteristics. In this blog series we would like to introduce you to a variety of them, helping you to make the best choices for your garden and grow the spring display of your dreams!
Puschkinia, The Quiet Charmer
The hidden charm of the modest Puschkinia Libanotica or Striped Squill has fascinated gardeners ever since the Russian botanist Count Mussim-Puschkin, who it’s named after, introduced it in Europe in the late 1800s. Puschkinia blooms in the empty moment between the fading of the snowdrops and the blooming of Chionodoxa. Being natural to the Caucasus region, it can tolerate both summer drought and brutal winter weather. This also makes it an ideal choice for naturalizing in tough spots, like in the shade of evergreen trees.
Puschkinia grows up to 6 inches in height.
Striped squill has a lovely clean, spicy fragrance, making it an ideal plant for a tiny bouquet. Maybe you could put some squills in a little vase and give them to someone who makes your life nicer through the little things they do?
At first sight Puschkinia seems just white, but on closer inspection it’s a silvery blue, with sky blue stripes bisecting the petals.
- Bloom time
Striped Squill is one of the season’s earliest bulbs, blooming in late winter and early spring.
Puschkinia comes back every year, making it an annual bulb. It also multiplies, naturalizing best under mature trees.
Striped Squill is hardy in USDA Zones 3-8, where like all bulbs it likes to be planted in well-draining soil. When it’s fall and bulb planting time comes around, find a place that either gets full sun or partial shade, and plant the flower bulbs 3 inches deep. Sine Striped Squill likes to stay moisturized, make sure to water the bulbs regularly after planting
To experience Puschkinia’s sweet charm even in the depths of winter, start the forcing process in mid-October. Select a clay container with drainage holes and partially fill it with a potting mix that is equal parts soil, builder’s sand and peat moss. Arrange the bulbs in such a way that they are close but not touching, and their points are flush with the rim, and gently cover them with more potting mix. Water them well. Now it’s time for the prechill process, find a place in your house where it will be a consistent, dark 38°F to 45°F, such as an unheated garage, basement or shed. Keep the bulbs there for about 8-10 weeks, checking moisture every few weeks. When the flower bulbs have developed shoots of 1-2 inches tall, they are ready to come out into a warmer room, where it’s 55°F to 60°F, but where they are not yet exposed to direct sunlight. After a week there, the bulbs are ready to be placed in your windowsill in direct sunlight, where they will bloom after about two weeks. When their leaves are starting to grow rapidly, make sure to give them a bit more water. To prolong their blooming time, put them in a colder room at night once they’ve started to flower.
- Container Planting
In fall, find a container with sufficient drainage holes and fill it up to 2/3 with potting mix. Place the Puschkinia bulbs on the soil with their pointy ends upwards, close but not touching. Gently add more potting mix until they are completely covered and water them well. Put the container in a spot that will get lots of direct spring sunshine, and come next February or March, these charming star-shaped beauties will be one of the first flower bulbs to welcome the new season.
Striped Squill is at its best when planted in large drifts on your lawn or under trees. DutchGrown is dedicated to giving you top-quality bulbs, and the more you buy, the more discount you’ll get. We sell 25 Puschkinia bulbs for $0.24 / bulb, but for 500 bulbs you only pay half that, at $0.12 / bulb.
A sea of Puschkinia in your garden.
Would you like a beautiful spring blanket of these ‘mini-hyacinths’ under your trees or on your lawn in early 2020? Then don’t hesitate, visit our website, and order your high-quality Striped Squill bulbs now. We will make sure they arrive at your door in top shape this fall, ready to be planted.