Plant autumn-flowering crocuses for an extraordinary display later this year as the delicately beautiful flowers rise as if by magic from the ground just as the rest of the garden is slowing down.
Most people associate crocuses with springtime, but in fact the range of autumn-flowering crocuses is huge – here in the garden centre at Thirsk we believe they ought to be more widely grown, so we’re putting out a fantastic selection of varieties to tempt you, ready to plant in the garden right now.
Plant your autumn crocuses in a sunny spot in free draining soil. They’ll be in flower from September to November, with delicately-marked goblets and narrow, strappy leaves. Just like spring crocuses, they’re happy among perennials and shrubs in the border; you can also scatter them through the lawn for a natural, wildflower-like effect, though hold off mowing until after the leaves have died back to make sure they return the following year.
You can even eat your autumn crocuses! The gourmet spice saffron is in fact the scarlet stamen of a pretty lilac-purple autumn-flowering crocus, Crocus sativus. Pick the ribbon-like red stamens out with a pair of tweezers and dry before keeping it in an airtight container.