You’ve probably heard of the spring snowflake (Leucojum vernum) and the summer snowflake (L. aestivum). But did you know there is also an autumn snowflake?
Originally named L. autumnale, this is now known as Acis autumnalis.
The autumn snowflake comes from the western end of the Mediterranean, growing on stony hillsides and other rocky places. The flowers appear first, on stems up to six inches high, each stem carrying up to four nodding flowers. These consist of four white tepals, pinkish at the base, although occasionally entirely pink flowers have been found. The narrow leaves appear after the flowers.
Such a small bulb is going to get overwhelmed in a late summer border, and with a sunny position and good drainage being necessary, an alpine bed or similar is the perfect spot to grow this. Propagation may be from seed, or by dividing the bulbs when dormant.
It may still be summer, but this little bulb reminds us autumn is heading our way.