Meadow saffron

Colchicum autumnale

Photo/Illustration: 
Colleen Fitzpatrick
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Meadow saffron (Colchicum autumnale)
KOHL-chi-kum ot-um-NAL-ee
Genus:  Colchicum
Meadow saffron is a cormous perennial with erect, lance-shaped leaves 5 to 14 inches long. It bears 1 to 6 goblet-shaped, lavender-pink flowers in fall.
Noteworthy Characteristics:  Fall-blooming crocus.
Care:  Needs spring sun to store enough food to flower. Once the foliage has ripened, denser shade is not a problem, so choose companion plants carefully. Grow in deep, fertile, well-drained soil that is not too dry, in full sun.
Propagation:  Separate corms when dormant in summer.
Problems:  Gray mold (Botrytis) and slugs.

Overview

Height
6 in. to 12 in.
Growth Habit
Clumps
Growth Pace
Fast Grower
Light
Full Sun to Part Shade
Moisture
Dry to Medium
Maintenance
Low
Characteristics
Showy Flowers
Bloom Time
Early Fall,
Fall,
Late Fall
Flower Color
Pink Yarrow
Uses
Beds and Borders,
Naturalizing
Style
Rock Garden
Seasonal Interest
Fall Interest
Type
Perennials

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Eupatorium purpureum
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Purple coneflower
Echinacea purpurea 'Magnus'
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