5 Blue Bulbs

Liven up the spring landscape with these blue flowers.

By Graham Rice


Blue-flowered bulbs bring a refreshing sparkle and an uncommon flower color to spring plantings. Under deciduous shrubs, nestling snuggly among hellebores, or partnered with dwarf daffodils, these bulbs are easy to grow and need little attention.

Several of the five below are also good in pots and can be moved into prominence as they bud and then tucked out of the way as the flowers fade. Feed them to fatten up the bulbs for the following year.

Glory of the Snow

Chionodoxa luciliae
This is one of the hardiest and easiest to grow of blue bulbs. There may be only two or three 1 1/4-inch blooms carried on each stem, but the little flowers face upwards and create quite an impact. Each rather flat, pale blue flower has lavender overtones and fades to white in the center. Best in partial shade.
Height: 9 inches; hardy to USDA Plant Hardiness Zone 3

Blue Bulb: Glory of the Snow
English Bluebell

English Bluebell

Hyacinthoides non-scripta
The classic spring bulb of the English woods, with its flower stem’s nodding tip, is far more elegant than the larger, more vigorous Spanish bluebell. Developing into fat clumps and spreading slowly, English bluebells have rich blue flowers that open late in spring with a soft fragrance. Best in partial shade.
12 inches; Zone 4

‘Delft Blue’ Hyacinth

Hyacinthus ‘Delft Blue’
This classic, super-scented hyacinth is perfect for a container by the front door, where you can enjoy its fragrance whenever you pass. With its dark-striped, rich blue flowers packed tightly on upright stems, ‘Delft Blue’ is an ideal combination of color and scent. Good for forcing, too.
9 inches; Zone 4

‘Delft Blue’ Hyacinth
‘Blue Magic’ Grape Hyacinth

‘Blue Magic’ Grape Hyacinth

Muscari ‘Blue Magic’
One of the most majestic of grape hyacinths, ‘Blue Magic’ has three-tone flower spikes: sky blue at the top, darker in the middle, and white-tipped at the base. It’s good in pots with daffodils or dwarf tulips, or plant it in the ground and allow it to spread naturally. Unlike some grape hyacinths, it never spreads too vigorously.
8 inches; Zone 4

Early Squill

Scilla mischtschenkoana
This indispensible little bulb may be tough to spell, but it is one of the best of all early bulbs. One of the first to open, it will flower for almost 2 months. Each starry 1-inch flower is ice blue with a darker stripe through each petal. Best in partial shade and good in pots.
6 inches; Zone 4

Early Squill

Photos: © Gardenphotos.com

Graham Rice @ Organic Gardening