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Hyacinths: Hyacinthus orientalis 'White Pearl'

Botanical name: Hyacinthus orientalis 'White Pearl'

Common name: Dutch hyacinth

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created by:
chief cultivator

Mercer island, Wa

at a glance

Soil: damp, acidic, sand
Zones: 3a thru 6b

deer resistant, poisonous, butterfly attracting, bee attracting

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description for "Hyacinths: Hyacinthus orientalis 'White Pearl'"

Hyacinthus orientalis 'White Pearl' is pure white with yellow anthers. With their fine form, soft, rich colors and heady fragrance, familiar spring hyacinths like 'White Pearl' are a not-to-be-missed joy of spring. Plant bulbs deeply in well-drained soil. Grows 6-8 inches high. These bulbs can be grown in the garden or forced into bloom indoors. Use them most effectively in the landscape by planting in groups of three or more. H. orientalis are perennial bulbs with strap-shaped, basal leaves, 6-14 inches long. Extremely fragrant, funnel-shaped, six-petaled blooms are held in large, dense racemes, up to 8 inches long. Outdoor grown bulbs perform best in cold winter regions. Mass plantings provide a stunning spring display, especially when grown under flowering trees or in borders. If you plant them deeply in any well-drained garden soil enriched with bulb food, these large bulbs will perform exceptionally well for many years to come. Deadhead after plants have bloomed. Hyacinths produce offset bulbs that can be removed when the bulbs are dormant and replanted to increase the planting. Hyacinths do best in cool climates. South of zone 7 they should be thought of as annuals. --edited by dtd siegelgirl


I used to have a slight mild dislike for Oriental Hyacinths, because my tastes run toward the subtlties of woodland gardens, wherein spring flowers big as footballs sitting on the ground are the very opposite of subtle. But that rich beautiful scent that fills a garden, & does not require the nose to get down & inside the bloom to notice it is there, won me over to having hyacinths. And now I look forward to their big flowers returning every March & April, though I do tend to tuck them in locations where their bright presence will seem more subdued. The standard white hyacinth is 'White Pearl,' a 1954 introduction. It is a fine thing to bring light to locations near the shadowed driplines of large shrubs or small trees. These are locations that have full sun either in the morning or afternoon, but are rather dark when the sun is to a shrub's or tree's further side. In their wild state, Oriental hyacinths are native of Greece & Turkey. Their blooms (florets) resemble lilac blooms, but upright on short stalks, & are invariably strongly scented. Granny Artemis finds the perfume of the more redolent daffodils & of hyacinths a bit too overwhelming to bring in the house, & it's true that a flower that can fill the open garden with pleasing perfumes can in a closed room be too much. A single hyacinth in a large bouquet of mixed spring blooms can be more than enough. Hyacinths do force very easily for anyone who wants to see spring flowers while it's still winter, & who are fond of very flowery scents. There are several methods but one is to keep the bulbs in the bottom of the refrigerator until you're ready to start potting them up. Pot them serially through autumn, then place the pots in a cool dark area such as the garage or unheated basement, & when budding shoots start to poke out about eight weeks later, bring them to a well lit window in a warm room. By this method the bulbs will be tricked into thinking it's spring & the flowers will develop rapidly. If this is done in a staggered manner it will be possible to have hyacinths flowering indoors from October through January. [Source:]

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