Scilla siberica 'Alba'
White Siberian Squill
Bloom Time: Early to late spring
Scilla siberica 'Alba' is a white cultivar of Scilla siberica. It is is a bulbous perennial, up to 8 inches (20 cm) tall and up to 2 inches (5 cm) wide, with 2 to 4 strap-shaped leaves appearing in early spring, at the same time as the nodding, white, bell-shaped flowers. The flowers have 6 petals and 6 stamens and are arranged singly or in racemes of 2 or 3. Petals may be reflexed to the horizontal when sunlight is bright, but are more often cup-shaped. After flowering, the flower stems become limp as capsules (pods) mature. At maturity, the capsules become purple and split open, releasing small, dark brown seeds.
USDA hardiness zone 2a to 8b: from −50 °F (−45.6 °C) to 20 °F (−6.7 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Scilla is adapted to full sun or dappled shade and likes well-drained soil. It naturally grows in rocky wooded areas, so it is just at home in dryish semi-wild parts of the landscape as it is in a rich, moist garden bed. Bulbs should be planted in the fall. Plant the bulbs in loose soil three to four inches deep and 8 inches (20 cm) apart with the tapered end pointed up. Scilla should receive regular water during the spring flush of growth. However, since the weather tends to be cool and moist during this time, it is generally not necessary to irrigate. It is important not to overwater, as the bulbs can rot.
The foliage should be left after the flowers fade, though it, too, fades in the heat of summer. Once Scilla leaves are all yellow, they may be cut to the ground, and the plant allowed to remain dormant until the following spring. It is important that the bulbs not be watered during the dormant period. See more at How to Grow and Care for Scilla.
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