Fritillaria is part of the Lily family and is grown from a bulb. Originally, Fritillaria flowers come from Europe and Asia, while some species are from North-America. There are around a hundred different species in the Fritillaria family.
In this 101 guide, you can discover everything you need to know about this fascinating cut-flower. Click the topic you’d wish to know more about, or just keep scrolling to read it all!
Fresh-cut Fritillaria flowers are a real seasonal product. They become available during winter and stick around until the start of summer. Mostly, Fritillaria is available from the end of January until June. This – combined with its characteristic hanging flowers – makes of Fritillaria a beloved flower for spring wedding bouquets and arrangements.
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How It’s Grown
Fritillaria is a versatile flower, with a lot of different appearances. Gia Flowers, located in Holland and one of our trusted growers, is dedicated to the perfect cultivation of Fritillaria flowers.
Are you curious about how Fritillaria is being grown? Take a look at this video that we made in the nursery at Gia Flowers!
Varieties, Colors, and Shapes
The botanical name Fritillaria comes from the Latin word ‘fritillus’, meaning dice-box. This is a reference to the spotted pattern that appears on some of the flowers, which makes the flower clusters seem like a collection of dice.
The flower is also known by several nicknames; Snake’s head, Chess flower, drooping Tulip, checkered Lily, and Guinea flower.
Fritillaria Meleagris is the most common species. Meleagris roughly translates to ‘spotted like a Guinea fowl’. In the Netherlands, this variety is also known as “Kwarteleitjes” (quail eggs) because of the same spotted pattern and the center that is yellow like the yolk of an egg.
Asian and European species usually have brown as a base color, combined with yellow, red-brown, gray, and white tones.
American species are usually more colorful, with yellow and red shades in the majority.
Cut the stems with a sharp knife, remove the bottom leaves if necessary. Use a clean vase and add flower food to the water, you could use specific flower food for bulb flowers. Please keep in mind that the flowers need some space in a bouquet, otherwise they could be squeezed.
Story and Symbolism of Fritillaria
There are many stories about why the flowerheads are hanging down. According to a legend, all flowers bowed as a sign of respect when Jesus passed by. Only the proud Fritillaria was too arrogant to bow. Because of this disrespect, an angel came down and spoke to the flower. The Fritillaria was so ashamed that its head went down and he started crying. Those tears are the shiny drops of nectar inside the flower.
The actual reason is a little more down-to-earth but no less amazing. The flowers are hanging down because Fritillaria blooms in periods with a lot of rain. In this way, the heart of the flower, with the fragile pistils, is prevented from getting wet: the crown and cup work as an umbrella!
These spring-blooming bulbs are a wonderful combination with other spring flowers like Tulips and Daffodils. Shorter Fritillarias are perfect for wedding decorations like corsages, hairpieces, or to be put on top of the wedding cake. These romantic flowers combine wonderfully with Ranunculi, Roses, Peonies, and Freesias.
There are loads of beautiful arrangements to make with this versatile flower.
How about this playful Spring egg with Fritillaria?
Combining Fritillaria With Other Flowers
Because Fritillaria is such a seasonal product with a characteristic look, it can be challenging to find good flowers to match them with. Below you can find five lists that we made for you to help you get started.
Pure: Combine Fritillaria Hermonis with Natural Flowers
When you are going for an innocent look, we recommend using flowers like Gypsophila Painted Pink, Cyperus Papyrus, Brunia Silver Spray and Allium Neopolitanum. All these flowers give a natural and honest look to your designs. Fritillaria Hermonis is a pure beauty that will definitely shine in spring.
Out of the Box: Mix Fritillaria Meleagris Alba with Rough Textures.
If you are looking for something interestingly new for your designs, we suggest these flowers to achieve a wild and an out of the box look. Flowers like Ornithogalum Mount Fuji, Tanacetum Baya, Genista Pink, and Hardenbergia Violacea will enrich your designs even further. Design something different and try these amazing flowers in your designs.
Modern Green: Blend Fritillaria Uva Vulpis with Green and Yellow Shades
Fritillaria Uva Vulpis is a fantastic small variety that we offer. This little flower will stand out even when you blend it with these modern green and yellow shaded flowers. Use flowers like Daffodil Soleil d’Or, Tanacetum Single Vegmo, Chasmanthium Latifolium and Solidago Carzan Glory to enhance your floral arrangements.
Classy: Compose Fritillaria Elwesii with Elegant Colors
Some flowers don’t need flashy colors to look beautiful, sometimes elegant colored flowers will give a subtle wealthy appearance. To achieve a classy impression, we suggest to use flowers like Limonium Mr. Silver Pink, Daffodil Sir Winston Churchill, Waxflower Purple Pride, and Ranunculus Cloony Nerone.
Playful: Match Fritillaria Meleagris with Cheeky Flowers
Just like all Fritillaria varieties, Meleagris is also a bulb flower. Matching cheeky flowers like Bupleurum Griffithii, Anigozanthos Mini Pearl, Centau Cyanus Blue, and Liatris Callilepis will give a playful vibe to your designs. In this way, you can grab the attention more vividly.