Low bulbous scapose herbs, with basal linear fleshy leaves, and nodding bracted racemose flowers, deep blue (rarely white) in the following species. Bulbs membranous-coated. Perianth globose, urn-shaped, or oblong, with 6 teeth or short lobes, tardily deciduous. Stamens 6, inserted on the perianth-tube, included; anthers ovate, versatile, introrse. Ovary 3-celled, sessile; ovules 2 in each cavity; style short; stigmas 3-lobed. Capsule 3-sided or 3-winged, usually 6-seeded, loculicidal. Seeds black, angled. [From the musk-like odor of the flowers of some species.]

About 40 species, natives of Europe, Asia and Africa. Type species: Hyacinthus botryoides L.

Perianth globose, 1"-1 1/2" in diameter; leaves erect.




Perianth oblong, urn-shaped, 2"-3" long; leaves recurved.




1. Muscari Botryoides (L.) Mill. Grape-Hyacinth

Fig. 1274

Hyacinthus botryoides L. Sp. PI. 318. 1753. Muscari botryoides Mill. Gard. Diet. Ed. 8, no. 1. 1768.

Bulb 1' high or less. Scape 4'-10' high; leaves about as long as the scape, erect or nearly so, 1"~4" wide, channeled, blunt or acutish; raceme oblong-cylindric, 1'-1 1/2 long, dense, or becoming longer and looser in fruit; pedicels shorter than the faintly odorous flowers; bracts very short; perianth globose, 1"-1 1/2" in diameter, 6-toothed, the teeth white, recurved; valves of the capsule obovate.

In meadows and thickets and along roadsides, escaped from gardens, New Hampshire to Ohio and Virginia. Naturalized or adventive from southern Europe. Native also of Asia. Grape-flower. Baby's-breath. Blue-bells. Blue-bottle. April-June.

1 Muscari Botryoides L Mill Grape Hyacinth 1274

2. Muscari Racemdsum (L.) Mill. Starch Grape-Hyacinth

Fig. 1275

Hyacinthus racemosus L. Sp. PI. 318. 1753-

Muscari racemosum Mill. Gard. Diet. Ed. 8, no. 2. 1768.

Similar to the preceding species. Leaves 1"-2" wide, recurved or spreading, channeled above; raceme oblong or ovoid, many-flowered, dense, 1'-2 1/2' long; pedicels shorter than the starchy-scented flowers or sometimes equalling them, slender, much longer than the bracts; perianth oblong, urn-shaped, constricted at the throat, 2"-3" long, with 6 deltoid recurved white teeth; capsule-valves suborbicular, retuse.

Escaped from gardens, Connecticut and southern New York to Pennsylvania and Virginia. Native of southern Europe. Grape-flower. Pearls-of-Spain. Starch-hyacinth. April-May.

2 Muscari Racemdsum L Mill Starch Grape Hyacinth 1275