Erythroniums produce delightful Turk's cap lily-type flowers that will elegantly dangle along the stems above beautiful variegated leaves. Perfect for the rockery, woodland or alpine garden, these lovely spring flowering plants will thrive in dappled shade before the dense canopy appears. Also known as dogtooth violets, they owe their nickname to the fang-like shape of their bulbs. Take care! These are fragile and can break/damage easily which is why careful handing is essential. Try mixing with other woodland bulbs such as trilliums, snowdrops, winter aconites and wood anemones.
Plant around 10 cm deep and around 5 cm apart in fertile, humus-rich soil in dappled shade — allowing for around 30 to 50 bulbs per square meter. Keep in mind that the soil should not be allowed to dry out or get waterlogged. Feed every couple of weeks with high potash feed; if you garden organically liquid seaweed is ideal as it is organic and comes from a sustainable source. The following year’s growth and flowers are made the previous year so leave the foliage to die back naturally.
Always unpack and plant on arrival. Take care! Wear gloves during handling and planting since erythroniums can cause skin irritation. They should never been eaten as they can cause a severe reaction. They can be especially toxic to cats, dogs and horses, which is why care should be taken to ensure they are not planted in or near a paddock.
Potential problems, pests and diseases:
Generally, erythroniums do not suffer from any serious diseases or insect problems. However, slugs and snails can be a problem as they enjoy eating their foliage. To avoid this, provide protection.