- Woodland crocus
- early crocus
- Tommasini's crocus
Location in the Gardens:
Season of interest:
- C tommasinianus is amongst the first crocuses to bloom in early spring (January to March). Flower pale lilac to deep purple.
Description of plant:
It is a cormous perennial of the Crocus genus in the Iridaceae family with a lilac flower, and is one of the smaller of the cultivated species. It has slender flowers about 2-4 cm (1-2 in) long, with white perianth tubes, petals (6) pale silvery lilac to reddish purple, while the outer petals may be overlaid with silver and darker tips. A variant, C. tommasinianus f. albus, is white. Its cultivars are used as ornamental plants. Height: 3 in (76 mm)
It naturalises easily earning an official recognition as a weed. It is often planted in large drifts in gardens and parks.
Ideal growing conditions and habitat:
Cold winter with snow, warm summer with regular rainfall, deciduous woodland, shady slopes; rocky places at high altitude.
Country of origin:
- Bulgaria, Hungary, Albania and the former Yugoslavia
It was named after the botanist Muzio G. Spirito de Tommasini (1794-1879), who was Mayor of the city of Trieste. It was planted at Highdown Gardens by Sir Frederick Stern.
Other interesting information:
This plant has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.