Fritillaria meleagris

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Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

Fritillaria meleagris, Linn. Checkered Lilt. Snake's- Head. Figs. 1580-1582. St. 1 ft. or more high: lvs. 3 or 4, linear or lanceolate, typically 1-fld.: fl. dull red with the inside checkered and spotted with higher color; segms. oblong, narrowed at both ends, about 1 ½ in. long, the inner ones bearing an oblong or linear cavity; fls. sometimes white or yellowish, or purplish and more or less checkered. England and Norway, through Cent. Eu. to Caucasus. Gn. 32:536; 47, p. 330; 52. p. 243.—The Dutch bulb-growers keep several kinds distinct. The extremes of color-range are (1) a greenish white, (2) a sufficient degree of purple to make the checkering as distinct as possible, and (3) an approach to yellow. Some kinds bear 2-3 fls.; some are double; some fls. spread so widely as to be almost funnel-shaped. Var. alba, Hort. White. G. 29:355. Gn.W. 21:221. Var. contorta, an old monstrosity, instead of segms. free all the way, and a shouldered base, has the lower third of the perianth united into a funnel-shaped tube. The yellow of some fls. is conjectured to be the result of a cross with F. lutea made before Gerarde's time. In England the species flowers toward the end of April. G. 18:182; 35:273. J.H. III. 52:329. Gn.M. 10:117; 12:228. Gn. 61, p. 306 (vars.) G.M. 52:770. CH

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