Planting Instructions by Flower Name
- Hardy Zones: 4-8
- Spacing: 2-3"
- Height: 10-12"
- Ships As: package of 15 bulbs
Guinea Hen Flowers
Fritillaria are in the Lily family and are native to temperate areas of the northern hemisphere. The 100 or so species in the genus are known for their nodding, cup-shaped flowers, which usually bloom in the spring. Fritillaria meleagris, aka Guinea Hen flowers or Checkered Lilies, are native to Europe and have interesting checkered blooms of white or maroon. The word Fritillaria is derived from the Latin ‘fritillus,’ meaning dice-box, and meleagris is Greek for guinea fowl, referring to the checkered blooms.
Plant these delicate bulbs soon after receiving and do not allow them to dry out. Plant bulbs 3-4” deep and 2-3” apart. You may see evidence of roots on the bottom of the bulb and possibly the beginnings of a new shoot at the top. If in doubt, plant the bulb sideways. Guinea Hen flowers prefer an area that receives full sun or partial shade, and they require rich, well-draining soil. Prior to planting, it is advised to work the soil well several inches below where the bulbs will be planting, mixing in compost if the soil does not drain well. The plants thrive in rock gardens or under deciduous trees, providing they get enough moisture in the spring.
Fritillaria are low maintenance plants. Water well during the spring growing season, and let dry out after flowering. As with other spring- and summer-blooming bulbs, let the foliage die back on its own, allowing the plants to create energy for next year’s blooms.