Hyacinthoides bluebell flowers, such as the English bluebells Hyacinthoides non scripta, and the Spanish Bluebells H. hispanica, and also the popular Virginia bluebell perennial form a stunning blue carpet in woodlands or in shade garden.
They also are perfect for growing under deciduous trees and under large shrubs in dappled shade.
Although they seem to thrive in dappled shade, you can grow bluebells in full sun if you provide ample moisture early in the season when they are starting to bloom.
However, in very warm climates, it’s best to plant them in dappled or in part shade.
These wonderful Hyacinthoides bulbs make a wonderful transition between early bulb flowers and perennial flowers in your garden.
When the perennials come into bloom, the bluebells will disappear until next year.
They are moderately invasive, but very easy to control. I simply dig up some bulbs and give to friends and neighbors.
The bluebell flowers look a bit like hyacinths, but are taller with looser flower clusters and much narrower leaves.
Your climate area will determine which kind of bluebell flower is best for your garden.
Scroll down for detailed growing information for these lovely late spring flowers that are blue
Hyacinthoides non scripta. Also once classified as Scilla non scripta, and sometimes called wood hyacinths. English bluebells grow best in colder zones such as 2-6.
They originated from western Europe. I remember seeing them in our woodlands in Sweden during late spring; such a lovely sight.
I love their small fragrant bell-shaped flowers that grow on 1 foot stems.
The leaves are swordlike and only 1/2 inch wide. There is a white “Alba” and a pink “Rosea” variety available, but the blue bluebell flowers are the most popular.
Hyacinthoides hispanica. Previously known as Scilla hispanica. The Spanish bluebells grow well in zones 1-11.
They originated in Spain and Northern Africa.
Spanish bluebells blooms with profusion and the flowers are more upright and open than the English bluebells. the swordlike foilage is shiny and arches out of the ground in a tuft-like shape.
The sturdy flower stems are 20 inches tall and look great in a vase.
The bell-shaped flowers have no fragrance though.
Growing Hyacinthoides Bluebells
The Spanish bluebells are best for warmer climate zones.
The English bluebells are best for colder climates with cooler summers.
You should plant bluebell bulbs in the fall. Plant them about 3 inches deep in warm climates and about 6 inches deep in cold winter regions.
Spacing for the bulbs should be about 6 inches.
The plants re-seed and naturalize easily and look beautiful in informal drifts among tall shrubs or under deciduous trees, and among short perennials.
You must provide water regularly from the time you plant the bulbs and until the foilage dies down in summmer.
Never let the soil dry out.
Divide infrequently if you must, and always divide in the fall.
The bulbs are great for containers and are excellent for cutting.
I love the fragrant English bluebells in a flower arrangement.