Crown imperial 'Aureomarginata' Fritillaria imperialis 'Aureomarginata' (v)
F. imperialis 'Aureomarginata' is abulbous perennial with stout, erect stems bearing whorled, lance-shaped leaves with deep yellow margins.In early summer produces a terminal umbel of hanging, bell-shaped, orange flowers beneath a crown of variegatedbracts
About this plant
Crown Imperial, Imperial Fritillary, Kaiser's Crown
Fritillaria imperialis var. aureomarginata.
Color of leaves
3 feet (0.91 meters)
1 foot (0.3 meters)
- General Benefits
- Aesthetic Appeal: The Fritillaria imperialis 'Aureomarginata' has a striking appearance with its large, bell-shaped flowers and a distinctive tuft of leaves atop the flower, which adds a unique visual interest to gardens.
- Habitat for Wildlife: This plant can provide nectar to certain insects and birds, creating a beneficial environment for pollinators and contributing to local biodiversity.
- Easy to Grow: Once established, the Crown Imperial can be relatively low-maintenance and is known to be resistant to pests like deer and rodents, making it easier to grow without extensive care.
- Spring Interest: It blooms in early to mid-spring, providing one of the first bright splashes of color after the winter months, which can be uplifting to the mood of those who see it.
- Natural Pest Deterrent: The skunky odor that the bulbs and flowers sometimes emit can naturally deter moles, voles, and other garden pests.
- Medical Properties
This plant is not used for medical purposes.
- Air-purifying Qualities
This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.
- Other Uses
- The bulbs of the Crown Imperial can be used as a source of starch for culinary purposes in times of scarcity.
- The striking appearance of the Crown Imperial makes it a valuable plant for educational purposes in botany and horticulture classes.
- The tall and elegant stature of the Crown Imperial allows it to be used in floral art and avant-garde flower arrangements.
- Dried Crown Imperial bulbs have been traditionally used as a scent deterrent to repel rodents and moles from gardens.
- The Crown Imperial's robust form can be used to create garden focal points, drawing the eye to specific landscape features.
- Its unique bell-shaped flowers can inspire artists and designers, influencing fashion, textile patterns, and jewelry designs.
- The plant can be used in theme gardens, such as royal or historical gardens, due to its regal nomenclature and history.
- The Crown Imperial can be cultivated for use in large containers and pots to adorn patios, balconies, and terraces.
- Its pendulous flowers may be used as a natural rain gauge, as they can catch and hold a measurable amount of rainfall.
- Photographers and nature enthusiasts might find the Crown Imperial a compelling subject for macro photography and botanical studies.
- Feng Shui
The Crown Imperial is not used in Feng Shui practice.
- Zodiac Sign Compitability
The Crown Imperial is not used in astrology practice.
- Plant Symbolism
- Regality - Fritillaria imperialis 'Aureomarginata,' commonly known as Crown Imperial, carries a sense of regality and majesty because of its tall, crown-like flowers that stand above many other plants in the garden.
- Power - The Crown Imperial's striking appearance and height convey a symbolism of power and command, as they can dominate the visual space of a garden.
- Pride - With its bold presence and the 'crown' of flowers atop the tall stem, the Crown Imperial embodies pride and self-assurance.
Crown Imperial requires moderate watering; during the spring growing season, water it thoroughly once a week with approximately 1-2 gallons per plant, making sure the soil is moist but well-drained. As the plant enters summer dormancy, reduce watering gradually to prevent waterlogged soil, which can lead to bulb rot. In the fall, start increasing water again when new growth appears.
Crown Imperial thrives in full sun to partial shade. It prefers a location that receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight daily, though some afternoon shade can be beneficial in extremely hot climates. Make sure to plant it in a spot where it won’t be shaded by taller plants as it grows.
Crown Imperial performs best in temperatures ranging from 50°F to 70°F during its growing season. It can survive cold winter temperatures down to 20°F, but should not be exposed to temperatures above 80°F for extended periods. The ideal growing condition mimics its mountainous habitat with cool, temperate climates.
Crown Imperial benefits from pruning primarily to remove spent flowers and seed pods to encourage better bulb growth for the following year. Prune the stems back to ground level after the foliage has turned yellow and died back, usually in late spring or early summer. It's not necessary to prune this plant frequently; once a year is sufficient.
Crown Imperial ('Aureomarginata') prefers a well-drained soil mix with ample organic matter; use equal parts loam, peat, and sharp sand. The ideal soil pH for this plant is mildly acidic to neutral, ranging from 6.0 to 7.0.
Crown Imperials generally do not require frequent repotting and can be left undisturbed for several years. Repot only when the bulbs become overcrowded, usually every 3 to 5 years.
- Humidity & Misting
Crown Imperial thrives in average outdoor humidity levels. It is not particularly humidity-sensitive and adapts well to the natural fluctuations of outdoor conditions.
- Suitable locations
Grow in bright light, cool temps, and well-drained soil.
Plant in sunny spot, provide good drainage, shield from high winds.
- Life cycle
The Fritillaria imperialis 'Aureomarginata', commonly known as the Crown Imperial, begins its life as a bulb, which is typically planted in the fall. In early to mid-spring, the plant emerges from the bulb, sending up a tall stem and lance-shaped, glossy leaves often edged with a yellow or gold color, as the variegation 'Aureomarginata' suggests. Following the foliage, the plant produces a prominent flower cluster at the top of the stem, with bell-shaped flowers that are usually red, orange, or yellow and hang down around a central tuft of leaf-like bracts, blooming from April to May. After flowering, the seed pods develop, and once mature, they open to release seeds, though cultivation is more commonly through offsets from the main bulb. Throughout the summer, the foliage dies back, and the plant enters a period of dormancy, conserving energy in the bulb. In the next fall, the cycle begins anew, with the bulb either growing larger or producing offsets that will grow into new plants.
The most popular method of propagation for Crown Imperial (Fritillaria imperialis 'Aureomarginata') is through bulb division. This is typically done in the fall, after the foliage has died back and the plant is dormant. Gardeners should carefully dig up the bulbs and gently separate any offsets, which are smaller bulbs that have formed at the base of the parent bulb. Each offset should have a portion of the basal plate to ensure it can develop into a new plant. These offsets can then be replanted immediately, at a depth of about 6 to 8 inches (15 to 20 centimeters), ensuring sufficient space for root growth. The re-planted bulbs should be placed in a well-drained soil with adequate sunlight, as the Crown Imperial thrives in full sun to partial shade. It is important to water the newly planted offsets to help establish them, but be careful not to overwater as this can lead to bulb rot.