Most of us know that finding plants with blue flowers can be a real challenge so many gardeners may not be familiar with Scilla. Scilla, also known as Squill, is native to Europe and Asia and is part of the Lily family. There are a number of variations of Scilla that bloom in the summer and fall but the spring-flowering variety is the most common type and the easiest to find. Scilla is a versatile bulb which can be used in containers, rock garden or even as an underplanting to trees and shrubs.

There is white Scilla available but in my opinion, the blue flowering bulbs are the most stunning. Siberian Squill, in particular, has a brilliant blue flower which is shaped like a bell. The plants grow 4 to 6 inches tall and each plant is covered with multiple flowers on each stem. If you are able to locate them Peruvian Squill is a summer flowering variety that grows nearly a foot tall and is topped by a ball-shaped bloom containing up to 100 small blue flowers. Despite its name, Peruvian Squill is actually native to countries in the Mediterranean and will tolerate warmer temperatures.  Other varieties of Scilla have blue flowers with a stripe along the center or have the shape of a star but there is no denying that mass plantings of this flower with other spring flowering bulbs such as a yellow Daffodils or red Tulip can be simply spectacular.

Scilla can be grown in garden zones 4 to 8 but the Peruvian Squill variety will not typically survive below zone 7 unless it is protected by a heavy amount of mulch. Scilla that flowers in the spring can be planted in the fall. The bulbs should be planted 3 to 4 inches deep and about 6 inches apart. Peruvian Squill, on the other hand, should be planted just below the soil line and not as deeply other Scilla.

Scilla will do well in partly sunny conditions including locations where it gets shade in the afternoon. If given the right soil conditions it will multiply over time. It is generally not bothered by pests or diseases either. The bright, beautiful blue flowers of Scilla can make a unique addition to any garden. If you love planting spring flowering bulbs and don’t have Scilla in your garden then maybe this is a flower that you should try in your yard this year.  

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