Summer snowflakes are a dependable bulb

Published on Thursday, 14 September 2017 17:30 - Written by ANNE PATTULLO, Smith County Master Gardeners

Leucojum aestivum, commonly known as “summer snowflakes,” are great pass-along bulbs for the East Texas area.

These pure white, drooping, bell-shaped flowers with a little dot of green on each petal bloom along with the daffodils in early spring. They put up a healthy clump of foot-tall green leaves with even longer stems that bear three to five 1-inch flowers.

There is a slightly larger cultivar known as Gravetye Giant that has more and larger flowers per stem. We will have both varieties at our From Bulbs to Blooms sale Oct. 14 at Harvey Convention Center.

A good feature of summer snowflakes is that they don’t need a very cold winter to bloom. It is best to plant the bulbs in clumps of about six. This way, the healthy clump of foliage really sets off the snow-white blooms most effectively.

Remember to leave the foliage for a couple of months after the blooms fade before mowing. This is the time when the leaves are providing energy to the bulb for next year’s flowers.

Snowflakes have been gracing our area for hundreds of years and are extremely dependable.