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Best of the bunch; gardens.

COLCHICUM

Also known as naked ladies and meadow saffron, these dainty little additions to the autumn garden produce several clusters of violet, crocus-like, wine-glass-shaped blooms with leaves not appearing until the following spring.

Although colchicums look like crocuses, they are actually members of the lily family and not a type of crocus. The bulbs usually only appear on sale in late summer and have to be planted immediately as they start flowering within a few weeks.

One of the best varieties for brightening the dark ground under trees is C. speciosum Album. Colchicum are known for their ability to thrive in shade and are good planted with woodlanders such as anemone nemorosa and lacy ferns. They like well-drained soil with plenty of added organic matter in sun or light shade. Other good varieties include C. Waterlily, which has large double flowers, and C. autumnale Major, which is smaller, stronger and produces many flowers.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Oct 11, 2008
Words:153
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