Leucojum – The Gentle Giant (Snowflake)
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!
A Posh Flower
The official name of this elegant flower is Leucojum Gravetye Giant, but it’s known by many other names, such as Summer Snowflake (though it blooms in spring), Dewdrop and St. Agnes’ flower. Unlike other flower bulbs, Leucojums love getting their feet wet, and in the wild they can be found in marshy meadows, wet forests and in the reeds on the banks of streams. The name Leucojum comes from Greek, and means white violet, while Gravetye refers to the Gravetye manor, the home of influential garden writer William Robinson.
Leucojum is a tall plant and grows up to 26 inches in height.
Though Giant Snowflakes look a bit like Lilies-of-the-valley, they are not fragrant.
Leucojum’s flowers are beautiful snow-white dangling drops whose points sport elegant greenish-yellow dots.
- Bloom time
Depending on where you live, the Giant Snowflake blooms in mid to late spring.
As a perennial bulb, Leucojum will come back every year, and since it’s a naturalizing plant, you’ll have a few more every year as well.
The Giant Snowflake is one of the very few flower bulbs that thrives almost everywhere in the US. From cold New England to the dry Southwest to the heat and humidity of the Deep South, Leucojums will happily grow wherever you plant them.
Unlike other flower bulbs, Leucojum actually does very well in badly draining, moist soil. But being the great all-rounders that they are, dry or well-draining soil makes them just as happy. Plant Giant Snowflake in the fall, making sure to plant the bulbs promptly after they’ve arrived, as they have a tendency to dry out quickly. Find a spot in the full sun or in partial shade. When you live in a warmer region, Leucojum needs shade or dappled light later in the day, to prolong the blooming window. Plant Giant Snowflake bulbs 4 inches deep and 4 inches apart, with the pointy end up. To achieve a nice effect, plant at least 15 bulbs in a group. Pat the ground to eliminate air pockets, and water well to settle the soil around the bulb. Leucojum is deer resistant, and doesn’t need any extra attention after planting.
To force Leucojum for indoors, start the process about 12 weeks before the desired blooming time by planting the bulbs 4 inches deep in a container that holds at least 3 more inches of soil under the bulbs, so they have enough space to develop a strong root system. Bulbs can be planted close together, but not touching, with their pointy sides up. Water well and leave the containers in a dark place where the temperature is a constant 40-50°F, like a shed, basement or dark garage. Leave the containers there for 8-10 weeks, checking every now and again to make sure the soil doesn’t dry out too much. After their chilling period is over, bring the containers to a warmer room with indirect lighting, leaving them there for a week. The week after that the containers are ready to go into a warm room with bright light, on a table or windowsill, where they will bloom after about 2 weeks.
- Container Planting
Unlike most other flower bulbs, Leucojum is not very suitable for container planting.
At DutchGrown, Giant Snowflakes start at $0.96 / bulb for 10 bulbs, but when you buy a thousand bulbs, you’ll get a discount of 40% and pay only $0.58 / bulb.
The tender white bells of Leucojum form a beautiful contrast with tulips with strong colors like the Triumph Red Power or the Lily-flowering purple Ballade. Other great partners for your Giant Snowflake are the yellow and orange Daffodil Tahiti or the yellow Allium Moly.
Giant Snowflakes In Your Garden
To get some of these easy and rewarding flowers for yourself, all you have to do is pay a visit to our website, where it takes just a few clicks to ensure your Leucojum bulbs get delivered straight to your door this fall, ready to be planted straight away!