Chionodoxa is one of the first bulbs to flower in spring. Also known as glory of the snow, the bulbs are native to Eastern Europe where they flower at high altitudes. Chionodoxa is a great choice for naturalising in lawns and under trees and when planted in large quantities, the flowers make a dazzling carpet.

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Take a look at our handy chionodoxa Grow Guide, below.


Where to plant chionodoxa

Plant Chionodoxa luciliae in well-drained soil in full sun. The bulbs can also be planted under deciduous trees and shrubs, as the flowers will emerge before the leaves above create a shady canopy.

Planting chionodoxa bulbs at the edge of a mixed planter
Planting chionodoxa bulbs at the edge of a mixed planter

Planting chionodoxa

Plant chionodoxa bulbs in autumn, 5cm deep and 5-7.5cm apart – or approximately 15 bulbs per 30cm square.

Watch Monty Don planting chionodoxa bulbs in dry, hard soil.

Looking after chionodoxa

Don’t mow or cut back plants that are growing in grass until the foliage has died back. This'll give the chionodoxa a chance to self-seed and naturalise.

Propagating chionodoxa

You can collect seed from chionodoxa when ripe, to sow in pots and germinate in a cold frame. Seedlings may take a few years to flower.

Alternatively you can take offsets from the bulbs in summer and pot up until ready to flower – this can also take a few years.

Chionodoxa: problem solving

Chionodoxa are generally pest- and disease-free.

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Starry, pale-pink chionodoxa 'Pink Giant'
Starry, pale-pink chionodoxa 'Pink Giant'

Chionodoxa varieties to try

  • Chionodoxa luciliae – this species bulb has blue, star-shaped blooms with a paler centre
  • Chionodoxa forbesii 'Pink Giant' – produces short racemes of pink star-shaped flowers with a pale centre
  • Chionodoxa forbesii ‘Blue Giant’ – produces larger blue flowers than C. luciliae, with a whiter centre
  • Chionodoxa sardensis – flowers earlier than C. luciliae, with larger blooms. These are a more intense blue in colour, without a white centre, held on longer, arching stems, up to 20cm. Each flower measures 3.5cm wide although there are usually only two or three flowers on each stem
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