Some plants survive all odds – I include myself as one of those odds – and this small bulb is one. It has stuck steadfastly with me and my sandy, dry-shade garden since 2000. 2000! This only became clear after hunting through my old Lee Valley 10-year gardener’s journal to recall the name of one of my daffodils (which I’ll show you later).
Now it has also survived a change in name. What was planted as Chionodoxa ‘Pink Giant’ (yes, quite a mouthful) is now Scilla ‘Pink Giant’ (far easier to say). However, I prefer the old common name, glory-of-the-snow, to the rather prosaic squill, don’t you? These are in the great big asparagus family, along with surprising relatives (besides ones you might expect like Hyacinthus) from Agave to Yucca!
Like other scillas, ‘Pink Giant’ does spread by self-seeding. In my garden, the sandy, dry shade does tend to keep it on the polite side, so I let it seed wherever it wants.
And, speaking of names, this is the daffodil (ordered at the same time as the scilla) that sent me searching. What I’d called it – incorrectly, I began to suspect some years ago – was Narcissus ‘Rip van Winkle’. Not so! Rip is a small, spiky daff, while this one is large and beautifully blowsy, so much so that they usually land face-down in the dirt. Some googling uncovered its probable identity.
Their heavy-headedness has one benefit. Every year, I catch them before they fall and bring them in to brighten up the indoors. Now in 2020, twenty years after planting them, we need cheerfulness in our homes more than ever!
And how are you surviving this spring?