Brodiaea 'Queen Fabiola' (Brodiaea laxa) is grown for its clusters of deep blue flowers, which appear in late spring and early summer. It is native to the west coasts of North and South America, where it grows wild in dry grasslands and arid, shrubby areas. Also recognized as Triteleia laxa ‘Queen Fabiola’. Commonly known as the triplet lily, fool’s onion, wild hyacinth or Ithuriel’s spear.
STEP 1 - KNOW
START WITH A BETTER BULB
Brodiaea grow from crocus-like bulbs called corms. As with most bulbs, investing in top quality corms will give you the best results. The corms should be solid and firm -- not mushy or dried out.
If the growing conditions suit them, over time these corms will multiply and naturalize. Brodiaea can also reproduce by seed.
STEP 2 - PLAN
Here's how to get your Brodiaea off to a great start:
Brodiaea are winter hardy in zones 8-9 (zone 7 if mulched during winter). In these areas, the corms may be planted in fall or spring.
In colder areas, brodiaea are planted in spring and either grown as annuals or are dug in fall and wintered indoors. We offer corms that are grown in Holland and they are only available for spring planting.
When planting brodieae corms, choose a warm spot where the plants will get full sun or mostly sun. The soil should be gritty or sandy (rock gardens are ideal), and be moist in spring, but stay dry during summer and fall.
The plant’s grass-like leaves appear in spring and then fade away when the flowers appear in late spring and early summer. You'll want to plan for this when thinking about where to place them in your garden. The overall height is about 15-20”. Brodiaea Queen Fabiola's blue-violet flowers are borne in clusters, with individual flowers opening continuously for a month or more. This extends the bloom time and also makes brodiaea an excellent cut flower. Bees and butterflies love them.
STEP 3 - GROW
Plant brodiaea corms in a garden or in containers with the root end down, 2-3” deep and 4-5” apart in clusters of 9-12 corms. In areas with wet summers, it's best to grow brodiaea in containers so they can be easily moved to a dry location during the summer when the bulbs are dormant.
STEP 4 - AFTERCARE
Brodiaea will survive the winter outdoors in zones 8-9, so there's no need to worry about them.
In zones 4-7, the corms should be dug in the fall, dried and then wintered over indoors at about 50°F. If you grow brodiaea in pots, you can simply bring the pots indoors and store them at 40 to 45 degrees F. Keep the soil dry. In the spring, move the pots back outdoors and resume watering.
If your brodiaea naturalize, the corms may need to be divided every 3 to 5 years. Dig and divide them when they are dormant.