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Crocus: Crocus chrysanthus 'Blue Pearl'

Botanical name: Crocus chrysanthus 'Blue Pearl'

Common name: snow crocus

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created by:
chief cultivator

Mercer island, Wa

at a glance

Soil: damp, neutral, sand
Zones: 4a thru 9b

deer resistant, poisonous, winter interest

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description for "Crocus: Crocus chrysanthus 'Blue Pearl'"

'Blue Pearl' has flowers that are soft lobelia-blue on the outside, which are lighter on the inside, with bronze-yellow bases and and deep yellow throats. As with all crocus, 'Blue Pearl' wants full sun, & do not open on overcast or rainy days, but will even so tolerate a bit of shade if they need to. They like dampness in spring & dryness in summer, but are frequently planted in gardens that are well-watered through summer, & 'Blue Pearl' seems to bear up to it. If placed near the root crowns of deciduous shrubs, they'll get the sun they need in late winter & early spring when they bloom, then when they are dormant, the roots of the shrubs will soak up the water to keep the corms from steeping in too much moisture, so not at risk of rot. It is a stunning shimmering shade of pale blue on the outside, & faded to a creamy pearlescence on the inside, with yellow heart. They are smallish to medium blooms, rounded & sturdy, not easily beaten down if they experience a hard rain. Furthermore, they are "bunch flowering" meaning each corm can produce more than one bloom. This renders them particularly floriferous & as few as a dozen bulbs can look like a very sizeable densely flowering drift. Look to the species crocuses for a bit of daring and adventure. After all, these crocuses hail from homelands that include Spain, Protugal, Morocco, Italy, Greece, Asia Minor and China. The flowers of the species are miniature when compared to their Dutch cousins, but the species definitely hold the upper hand when it comes to color.


Introduced by Gerald H. Hageman of The Netherlands in 1950, Crocus chrysanthus 'Blue Pearl' has become one of the standard garden crocuses very widely distributed around the world. Occasionally a gardener may be overwhelmed with an inappropriate elitism & want rarer kinds of crocuses that not just anyone can easily obtain. But bear in mind 'Blue Pearl' is a recipient of the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit, & truly a splendid variety. The majority of the crocus varieties in this species naturalize easily, & 'Blue Pearl' does so more easily than most. The classic snow crocus species & varieties are often defined as "early" blooming because it gets ahead of spring, this one is so "early" it should really be thought of as "late winter." In our garden it begins blooming mid February or slightly earlier & lasts until mid March or a bit longer in an ideal year. In a year less than ideal they can be battered into early submission by heavy rainfall. [Source:]

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