How to Plant and Grow Glory-of-the-Snow

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Glory-of-the-snow Chionodoxa lucilae

Native to Western Turkey, these cheery little spring-blooming bulbs are one of the earliest to bloom. In fact, glory-of-the-snow are often so early there is still snow on the ground and the small flowers still manage to bloom — hence their common name. These little bulbs are a great option if you are looking for early color and a bulb that will naturalize easily and quickly.

Glory-of-the-Snow Overview

Genus Name Chionodoxa
Common Name Glory-of-the-Snow
Plant Type Bulb
Light Part Sun, Sun
Height 6 to 6 inches
Width 3 to 6 inches
Flower Color Blue, Pink, White
Foliage Color Blue/Green
Season Features Spring Bloom
Special Features Cut Flowers, Good for Containers, Low Maintenance
Zones 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
Propagation Division, Seed

Colorful Combinations

Glory-of-the-snow, with their starry little blossoms, are sure to chase away the last of the winter blues. The small, six-petal flowers in shades of blue, white, and pink are held in small clusters. The blue varieties are most common and feature a striking white center with blue-tipped petals. No matter what color you grow, all glory-of-the-snow make great cut flowers and are the perfect size for a bud vase. The foliage of glory-of-the-snow is long, narrow, and grasslike.

Chionodoxa or Scilla?

Over the years, there has been much confusion on the proper nomenclature for glory-of-the-snow. At first glance, these plants resemble Scilla, another bulb and close relative of Chionodoxa. So close, in fact, that many consider glory-of-the-snow to technically be a Scilla. On top of that, even within the genus of glory-of-the-snow, there is confusion about whether or not the species are the same or different.

Glory-of-the-Snow Care Tips

Growing glory-of-the-snow is as simple as planting a little bulb, dusting off your hands, and walking away. Native to rocky mountainsides, these bulbs aren't too picky. Like most bulbs, they require well-drained soil. Bulbs in general are at a higher risk of rotting if grown in overly moist soil. Glory-of-the-snow can tolerate drought. When planting, make sure to set the bulb about two to three times as deep as the bulb is wide, so if you have a 1-inch-wide bulb, plant it 2 to 3 inches deep.

As quick as glory-of-the-snow is to rise in early spring, their foliage is almost just as quick to fade. The foliage begins to quickly decline and goes dormant just after they finish flowering. This makes them great for naturalizing in lawns as long as you can give them several weeks before mowing them down. It also means you can plant these bulbs just about anywhere in the garden. Sun or shade, they are typically on their way out by the time foliage is beginning to emerge on trees and perennials, so there is no need to worry about them being shaded out.

Varieties of Glory-of-the-Snow

'Alba' Glory-of-the-Snow


This variety of Chionodoxa luciliae is a white flowering form of the traditional species. Plant in zones 3-8.


Glory-of-the-snow Chionodoxa lucilae

Chionodoxa lucilae offers starry blue flowers that open early in the spring, even blooming through snow. The petals reflex, revealing white centers that add a touch of the clouds to the sky blue petals. It grows 5 inches tall. Plant in zones 3-9.

'Pink Giant' Glory-of-the-Snow

'Pink Giant' glory-of-the-snow Chionodoxa lucilae

Lilac-rose flowers that unfurl in a tall column make this variety of Chionodoxa lucilae unique. It grows 6 inches tall. Plant in zones 3-9.

'Violet Beauty' Glory-of-the-Snow

purple glory of the snow liliaceae

This Chionodoxa luciliae selection is a beautiful bright pink form of the standby. Plant in zones 3-8.

Chionodoxa sardensis

Chionodoxa sardensis

Chionodoxa sardensis is another great species with bright blue flowers with no white on the petals. Plant in zones 3-8.

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