What is Star of Bethlehem?
Star of Bethlehem (Ornithogalum umbellatum) also known as Summer Snowflake, Starflower, Sleepydick, Grass Lily, Birds Milk is a clump forming, bulbous perennial. It is part of the Liliaceae family and is native to Europe, Lebanon, Israel, Syria, Turkey and North Africa. Star of Bethlehem is a Spring flowering bulb that produces a long stem of delicate white star shaped flowers with a pale green tinge on the back of each. The flowers will only open when if full sunlight. The foliage is in a linear shape, green with a white stripe down the center of each leaf. Star of Bethlehem should be planted in a full sun to part shade position in the garden that has good well draining soil. The plant will grow and multiply vigorously.
Benefits of Growing Star of Bethlehem
Star of Bethlehem is a very easy to grow bulb and goes well in both pots and the garden. It can be used in rockeries, in borders, in a woodland setting or planted at the base of deciduous trees. They are a fantastic bulb for naturalising as they will gradually become a thick clump.
How to Grow Star of Bethlehem
Cool to Mediterranean.
Height: 20-30m, Width: 10cm
When To Plant Star of Bethlehem
Plant in Autumn to early Winter.
They prefer a well drained, moist soil. Dig through well broken down manure or compost into the soil before planting.
How To Plant Star of Bethlehem
Plant in full sun to part shade, 10cm apart with the bulb at a depth of 10cm underneath the soil level.
Star of Bethlehem Plant Care
Water in to establish and then only if rainfall is low during growth, they become dry tolerant as they mature.
After flowering you can deadhead to prevent the seeds from spreading. Remove the dead foliage as the plant goes into dormancy.
As they multiply quite fast you may need to divide every few years.