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Fritillaria meleagris (Snake's head fritillary)

Beginner
skill rating
1 hour care
per year
0.5m
Max height
0.1m
Max spread
2-5 years
To maturity

Plant details

Botanical name

Fritillaria meleagris

Other names

Snake's head fritillary, Guinea flower, Snake heads, Guinea-hen flower, Drooping tulip, Leper lily, Chequered daffodil, Chequered lily

Genus

Fritillaria Fritillaria

Species

F. meleagris - F. meleagris is a small bulbous perennial with narrow -grey-green leaves and delicate, nodding, bell-shaped flowers that have purple and pink markings resembling a chess-board in spring.


Fritillaria meleagris is: Deciduous

Habit

Erect

Flower

Checkered, Purple, Pink in Spring

Foliage

Green in Summer

How to care

Watch out for

Specific pests

Lily beetle (Scarlet) , Slugs Lily beetle (Scarlet) , Slugs

Diseases

Generally disease-free.

General care

Propagation methods

Division, Seed


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Where to grow

Fritillaria meleagris (Snake's head fritillary) will reach a height of 0.5m and a spread of 0.1m after 2-5 years.

Suggested uses

Beds and borders, Cottage/Informal, Gravel, Low Maintenance, Naturalised in turf, Rock, Wildflower

Cultivation

Plant bulbs at four times their own depth in moist, free-draining soil in a sunny but cool or partly shaded position. Bulbs are delicate, so need to be handled carefully. Can be naturalised in grass.

Soil type

Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types)

Soil drainage

Well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral

Light

Partial Shade, Full Sun

Aspect

South, East, West

Exposure

Exposed, Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Hardy (H4)

Companion plants

We do not currently have companion plants added for this plant.

Botanical name

Fritillaria meleagris

Other names

Snake's head fritillary, Guinea flower, Snake heads, Guinea-hen flower, Drooping tulip, Leper lily, Chequered daffodil, Chequered lily

Genus

Fritillaria Fritillaria

Species

F. meleagris - F. meleagris is a small bulbous perennial with narrow -grey-green leaves and delicate, nodding, bell-shaped flowers that have purple and pink markings resembling a chess-board in spring.

Foliage

Deciduous

Habit

Erect


Colour

Flower

Checkered, Purple, Pink in Spring

Foliage

Green in Summer


How to care

Watch out for

Specific pests

Lily beetle (Scarlet) , Slugs

Diseases

Generally disease-free.

General care

Propagation methods

Division, Seed


Monthly care advice


Where to grow

Fritillaria meleagris (Snake's head fritillary) will reach a height of 0.5m and a spread of 0.1m after 2-5 years.

Suggested uses

Beds and borders, Cottage/Informal, Gravel, Low Maintenance, Naturalised in turf, Rock, Wildflower

Cultivation

Plant bulbs at four times their own depth in moist, free-draining soil in a sunny but cool or partly shaded position. Bulbs are delicate, so need to be handled carefully. Can be naturalised in grass.

Soil type

Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types)

Soil drainage

Well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral

Light

Partial Shade, Full Sun

Aspect

South, East, West

Exposure

Exposed, Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Hardy (H4)

USDA zones

Zone 8, Zone 7, Zone 6, Zone 5, Zone 4, Zone 3

Defra's Risk register #1

Plant name

Fritillaria meleagris (Snake's head fritillary)

Common pest name

Alfalfa dwarf; Anaheim disease; California vine disease; Dwarf disease of alfalfa; Dwarf disease of lucerne; Leaf scald of oleander; Leaf scald of plum; Leaf scorch; Phony disease of peach; Pierce's disease of grapevine; Variegated chlorosis of citrus

Scientific pest name

Xylella fastidiosa (all other strains and subspecies)

Type

Bacterium

Current status in UK

Absent

Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

3

Impact (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

4

General biosecurity comments

A bacterial disease with a wide host range and many sub-species and strains; including those that could thrive in cooler climates; showing different levels of pathogenicity. Although EU regulated; there is some concern about the risk of introduction. Should an outbreak occur; there would be a need for eradication action which would result in environmental and social impacts.

Defra's Risk register #2

Plant name

Fritillaria meleagris (Snake's head fritillary)

Common pest name

common blossom thrips; cotton bud thrips; tomato thrips

Scientific pest name

Frankliniella schultzei

Type

Insect

Current status in UK

Absent

Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

2

Impact (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

3

General biosecurity comments

Polyphagous glasshouse pest; present in many countries; single finding in UK.

About this section

Our plants are under greater threat than ever before. There is increasing movement of plants and other material traded from an increasing variety of sources. This increases the chances of exotic pests arriving with imported goods and travellers, as well as by natural means. Shoot is working with Defra to help members to do their part in preventing the introduction and spread of invasive risks.

Traveling or importing plants? Please read "Don't risk it" advice here

Suspected outbreak? Click here for contact details to report to the relevant authority.

Date updated: 7th March 2019 For more information visit: https://planthealthportal.defra.gov.uk/

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Fritillaria meleagris (Snake's head fritillary)

My favourite Spring flowers (28/06/2012)

(09/05/2013)

(22/05/2011)

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This plant likes... Garden match
Soil types: Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types) Tell us...
Soil drainage: Well-drained Tell us...
Soil pH: Acid, Alkaline, Neutral Tell us...
Light: Partial Shade, Full Sun Tell us...
Aspect: South, East, West Tell us...
Exposure: Exposed, Sheltered Tell us...
Hardiness: Hardy (H4) Tell us...

DISCUSS THIS PLANT

seedling sucess

Followed instructions last year and now have dozens of shoots in my seed trays. Looking forward to potting up the bulbs... read more

planting time for fritillaria meleagris

When is the best time to plant my snake's-head fritillary bulbs?Gillian Linton read more

Sewing Fritillaria seeds June-July

Here is what Carol Klien says about sewing the seeds of Fritllais Meleagris in June/July. Taken from www.telegraph.co.uk/gardening/3312333/Gardening-email.htmlIt is during late June and early July… read more

There are 3 active discussions about Fritillaria meleagris (Snake's head fritillary)

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ARTICLES WITH THIS PLANT

Barrie Hedges - Community Leader Profile

Semi-retirement transformed the gardening habits of Shoot community leader Barrie Hedges. Where once he struggled to find time for a "never very productive" allotment and a few flowers and shrubs… read more


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