Black Sarana, Chocolate Lily, Indian Rice, Fritillary, Fritillaria
Fritillaria camschatcensis

Family: Liliaceae (lil-ee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Fritillaria (frit-il-AR-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: camschatcensis (kam-shat-KEN-sis) (Info)

Category:

Bulbs

Height:

12-18 in. (30-45 cm)

Spacing:

6-9 in. (15-22 cm)

Hardiness:

USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Danger:

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:

Dark Purple/Black

Bloom Time:

Mid Spring

Late Spring/Early Summer

Foliage:

Herbaceous

Shiny/Glossy-Textured

Veined

Other details:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Non-patented

Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Seed Collecting:

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Regional

This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Juneau, Alaska

Kodiak, Alaska

Moose Pass, Alaska

Nikiski, Alaska

Dinuba, California

Grand Junction, Colorado

Saint Paul, Minnesota

show all

Gardeners' Notes:

1
positive
0
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RatingContent
Positive

On Jun 25, 2002, Weezingreens from Seward, AK (Zone 3b) wrote:

In Alaska, we call the Fritillaria camschatcensis the "Chocolate Lily", due to the brownish color of the bloom, I would suppose. They are often fondly referred to as sh*t lilies due to the flower's aroma that rivals fresh manure.

They are present in many of our Southcentral Alaskan gardens, brought in from the wild, and tend to multiply quite rapidly, sprouting new leaves from the pips around the plant. In the wrong place, they could be considered invasive.

Another name for the Chocolate Lily is "Indian Rice". Since prehistoric times the bulbs have been a staple in the native diet. Though slightly bitter, the bulbs can be eaten raw or cooked. They tend to be less bitter after the leaves of the plant turn yellow in the fall.