INFORMATION ABOUT NECTAROSCORDUM…
By: Nikki Phipps
Image by suneko Nectaroscordum, or Honey lily, is a small subgenus of the genus Allium consisting of only two species, N. siculum and N. tripedale. Both are rare ornamental bulbous plants used in gardening. Nectaroscordum is often called Sicilian Honey Garlic, a reference to the spicy sweetness of its fragrance.
This is a winter-growing bulb native to southern France, Italy and Sicily and best suited to Mediterranean-like climates.
Growth usually begins with the fall rains and by late spring Nectaroscordum produces gracefully drooping clusters of pendant or bell-shaped blooms. The stalks of the flower cluster all arise from one point like spokes of an umbrella. The color of the flower is unusual; green and rosy-purple with white edges. Nectaroscordums have dozens of tri-colored blooms on every stem and are wonderfully fragrant. Blooming typically takes place in late spring.
It is very easy to grow on almost any type of soil. Nectaroscordum grows in sun or shade, but prefers sun and a somewhat dry location, especially in summer. It loves the heat of summer, yet, it’s quite hardy in winter.
Grow in groups of three or more bulbs and plant them at least 4 inches deep in the fall. This is an ideal plant to use for naturalizing. Nectaroscordum will also add elegance to the back of the late-spring border, along a path, or even in containers. Nectaroscordum looks wonderful with hosta, roses, and peonies.
Nectaroscordum also forms strange, but beautiful, upright standing seed heads. These interesting seed pods also make lovely additions to floral arrangements. Once the seeds have ripened, they can be collected for drying and sowing another crop. Nectaroscordum also propagates easily through small offsets that can be found when digging. When foliage dies down and the bulb is dormant, you can dig them up.
As they are related to the onion family, deer do not bother these plants. This also discourages insects and other pests from nibbling in the garden as well.