The crown imperial is well named. It is a dominant plant in the spring border. You smell it before you see it – quite a feat given its size. I’m sure the neighbours believe I’m smoking something I shouldn’t. The skunky smell deters deer, cats, rodents, delivery drivers and burglars. All right, I exaggerate – the latter like the smell. Fritillaria imperialis “William Rex” has a lovely bronzy-red colour. I wouldn’t want a garden full otherwise we would fail to have deliveries.

Fritillaria imperialis “William Rex”

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