A Garden Must: Wood Hyacinths


Normally most of my posts are of various questions that I receive through my blog.  However, for the last few weeks, I’ve been itching to have to sit down and plug a flower that I’ve recently become acquainted with… and probably addicted to.

Last fall I had the opportunity to get some free bulb samples.  Given that I knew I’d be moving soon, I planted my bulbs at DF’s house.  Turkish Tulips, Giant Alliums, Grape Hyacinth, Scilla, Darwin Tulips, Generic Daffodils and Narcissus, Hardy Glads, and… Wood Hyacinths (Hyacinthoides hispanica or ‘Spanish Bluebells’).

Growing up, my Mom and Grandma were really into tulips and daffodils and ‘new and different’ was if you had a hyacinth.  Living in the country, most ‘different’ bulbs just didn’t make it because they were soon gobbled up in the night by a gopher or a vole.

In graduate school, there was a cluster of wood hyacinths on the south side of the Horticulture Hall.  They were in a small, dry-looking cluster and had white flowers.  They never got too tall and weren’t anything to shout about.  I chalked them up to being one of those flowers that I’d only have in the garden if I had every possible flower that could grow in my area.

So, getting these Wood Hyacinths didn’t really excite me as much as the other bulbs did, but I put them in anyway and waited for spring.  Once things had warmed up, I had lost my list of what was where and was trying to figure out what the liatris-like flowers were.  They were not blooming yet, but just kept getting taller.

A couple weeks later when I was up in the area to see my flowers again, I just about shocked DF with my exclaimation of “what are those?!?”  I could not believe my eyes!  Those wood hyacinths were GORGEOUS!  They were full of bees and even the hummingbirds would enjoy them.

Needless to say, any other color of wood hyacinth that is offered in the catalogs WILL be joining my garden!  From what I have found, you can buy them in Indigo Blue (what I have), Pink, White, or Light Blue.

I happened to be on campus the other week and noticed that the area where they had had the wood hyacinths has been paved over for a bike parking area.  I’d pave over those too.  I don’t know what was wrong with them or if they were a dwarf variety or what, but they were not representative of the beauty that is the Wood Hyacinth.

So, as the Fall 2012 catalogs begin to filter into your mailbox, I encourage you to take a good look at the Wood Hyacinths.  They are a flower that will do well in any garden and are sure to please you.

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© Mertie Mae Botanics LLC and Horticulture Talk!, 2012. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Mertie Mae Botanics LLC and Horticulture Talk! with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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