Bird’s Eyes Seeds - Gilia (Gilia tricolor) Birds Eye Gilia Organic Non GMO Heirloom Wildflower Tricolour Gilia Flower
Height 12 to 18 in/ 40 to 50 cm
Bird’s Eyes Gilia is a member of the Phlox family (Polemoniaceae), and is a West Coast native annual with charming lavender lilac blue and white bell like blooms ( 1.5 to 2 cm) and golden throats; the flowers that are highly fragrant and the sweet chocolate-like scent is a magnet for bees and hummingbirds. The colour of the flowers is lilac-blue, and inside the Corolla - in the throat, there is a black-purple spot that resembles a birds eye, hence the name.
Bird's Eyes are native to California, and can be grown as an annual in cooler climates. Plants reach up to 40 to 50 cm tall, and the diameter of the flowering bush is about 40 cm. March-April in greenhouses. Excellent for planting in flower beds, perennial borders, for the decoration of vases and balconies.
The Gilia genus contains mostly desert-loving plants, native to the area stretching from the western United States to South America. Spanish botanists Hipolito Ruiz and Jose Antonio Pavon found the first known Gilia species on their expedition to South America, later detailing it among other species in a 1794 publication of their research from Peru and Chile. They gave this family of flowers the name Gilia in honor of Filippo Luigi Gilii (1756-1821), an Italian naturalist whom they greatly admired for his research in South American native plant life at the Vatican Observatory.
- Full Sun
- Well draining soil
- Seedlings are planted in the ground after the end of spring frosts, maintaining a distance of 15-25 cm.
- Direct sow in late fall, planting just below the surface.
- For spring planting, mix the seed with moist sand and store it in the refrigerator for 30 days; direct sow.
- OR start indoors, sow in a flat or individual pots 6 to 8 weeks before last frost. Sow seeds 2mm (1/8 in) deep. Transplant after last frost into average, well drained soil. Keep the soil lightly moist and at a temperature of 70 degrees F until germination
- Germination: At a temperature of 12-18°C (55-65°F) seeds should germinate in 17 to 21 days
- Transplant outdoors after seedlings have two true sets of leaves and when the weather has warmed. Keep the soil moist as the seedlings develop, which will happen rather slowly at first.
- Mature plants tolerate drought well, preferring hot and dry conditions; do not overwater, since this can cause disease.
- This plant adapts well to areas with rocky or sandy soil.
- It will self-sow, and is extremely attractive to butterflies and bees.
- For fresh flowers, cut long stems of flowers that have just opened and place them in water immediately; strip the leaves that will fall below the water.
- Harvest: after blooming, the flowers will become dry capsules that open to reveal several brown seeds; cut the ripened heads or simply shake the entire plant over a container to remove the seeds.
- Seed Count: 25