The patriarch of my family of crown imperials
, my original plant, flowers as gloriously every spring as any other, apparently unfazed by occasionally having a few bulb scales removed and having to share its domain with numerous heirs.
have very large bulbs with a hollow centre, so it's best to plant them tipped over on to their sides on a 2in (5cm) bed of sand to stop them rotting, unless you have really well - drained soil.
The Crown Imperials
are the Simon Cowells of the border - they rise sharply over the crowded spring beds, letting everyone know who's boss with their sense of importance.
THESE are huge, stately plants with shiny leaves and glamorous hanging bells in shades of red, orange and yellow topped with a crown of leaf-like bracts.
Drifts of bulbs are often more effective, as fewlook good planted individually unless they are big, such as large alliums, lilies and crown imperials
Q HOW can I make my Crown Imperials
flower every year?
TREAT yourself to a few bulbs of crown imperials
and belladonna lily - and plant them now.
It reminds me of spring, like the pungent stink of Crown Imperials
as they emerge from the bare ground.
EXPERT TIP: Crown imperials
can be stripped by scarlet lily beetle, so protect them by spraying early with Provado Ultimate Bug Killer.
INVEST in a few crown imperials
(Fritillaria imperialis), which should be in garden centres now.
But in the other I'd plant the tall Crown Imperials
(Fritillaria imperialis) for spring flowering.
3 each of Crown Imperials
'Aurora' - 90cm tall with orange blooms & 'Persica' - tall, with purple flowers.
Bearded iris and crown imperials
are also easy to grow and will provide a bold and grand show.
Take the handsome Crown Imperials
, Fritillaria maxima, which are so showy in the spring.
SPECTACULAR crown imperials
grow up to 3ft tall with a circle of cascading flowers topped with a graceful emerald crown.