Fritillaries in Full Bloom | Living the Country Life

Fritillaries in Full Bloom

This April-blooming flower's wide range of colors and shapes promises to suit your gardening and decorational needs.
The Checkered Lily gives the Fritillia its Latin-based name.
Photos courtesy of ibulb.

The name "fritillary" comes from the Latin word Fritillus, which means "dice cup" in reference to the cup-shaped flowers. The markings on a Checkered Lily look something like dice, and contritube to the name. 

Fritillaries are known to blend well in groups of the same or more than one species in their genus. They also combine attractively with oher bulbous plants or perennials. Bulb flower experts from ibulb give the following advice on planting these flowers.

Planting Fritillaries 

Like other spring-flowering bulbs, fritillaries should be planted in October or November. Because the bulbs have no protective skin, they'll dry out quickly, so plant them as soon as possible after purchase.

Plant flowers in a moist, well-drained location that provides sun and partial shade. Plant small bulbs at a depth of 2.5 to 4 inches, and larger ones at 8 inches. 

The bulbs of the Crown Imperial have a hollow center at the place where last year's stem emerged. This is the top of the bulb - to keep water from standing in this indentation, plant these bulbs at a slant.


Provide some extra water during and after flowering, and give taller fritillaries some support. The plants will die in fall, but the bulb will survive beneat the soil surface to bloom again. 

Some fritillaries require pre-winter care; Imperialis will survive a winter more easily if covered by a mulching of leaves or compost. Persica should be lifted and replanted in autumn. Meleagris naturalizes easily, so you can leave them undisturbed in the ground until they pop up the next year. 

For more on bulb flowers and planting tips, go to

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