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Crocus tommasinianus (woodland crocus, Tommasini's crocus, early crocus), often referred to as 'tommies', were named after the botanist Muzio G. Spirito de Tommasini (1794-1879), who was Mayor of the city of Trieste. They are native to Bulgaria, Hungary, Albania, and the former Yugoslavia. They are often referred to as early or snow crocuses, but these terms are shared with several other species, although C. tommasinianus is amongst the first to bloom.
It is a cormous perennial of the Crocus genus in the Iridaceae family with a lilac flower, and is one of the smaller of the cultivated species. It has slender flowers about 2–4 cm (1–2 in) long, with white perianth tubes, petals (6) pale silvery lilac to reddish purple, while the outer petals may be overlaid with silver and darker tips. A variant, C. tommasinianus f. albus, is white. Its cultivars are used as ornamental plants. Height: 3 in (76 mm)
It naturalises easily earning an official recognition as a weed. It is often planted in large drifts in gardens and parks.
- 'Barr's Purple' (amethyst violet)
- 'Lilac Beauty' (purple)
- 'Roseus' (Pink Snow)
- 'Ruby Giant' (purple)
- 'Whitewell Purple' (silvery reddish purple flowers, pale mauve on the inside)