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Name The lilies seen today are a mixture of species, the most popular ones are Oriental which have a very strong perfumed smell, and the Asiatic most people call these Tiger lily but in fact the Tiger lily is a different species, L. tigrinum
Description One of the first descriptions of the lily dates from the Chinese Middle Ages "the plant flowers until late autumn and there are three types, red, yellow and purple".
Colour Orange, Yellow, Pink, White, Dark Pink, Light Pink
Availability All year round
Varieties Asiatic - Brunello (orange), Madras (yellow), Vivaldi (pink), Navona (white)

Oriental - Stargazer (dark pink), Siberia (white), Casablanca (white), Sorbonne (light pink)

Care Tips Remove the pollen stamens by pinching them together and pulling them up out of the flower. This prolongs the flower's life as well. Use sellotape to remove pollen, not water which will fix the stain.


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Lilies have multiple and varied meanings, some associate them as a symbol of death and were once placed on children’s graves, the Chinese culture believe they serve as good luck charms.


It is important to distinguish between the different species, here is an outline of the most popular ones.

Asiatic Hybrid – These were in the Mid-Century bred mainly by a North American company, they used to hybridise the Asiatic with such species as L. maculatum, L. x hollandicum, and L. tigrinum.

The Asiatic is the most popular due to its many different colours, the most popular of which is yellow and orange, the Asiatic lily does not smell

Oriental – The initail parents were Speciosums crossed with such species as L. auratum and later with L. japonicum and L. rubellum.

This type has huge flower 15cm in diameter and has a very strong sweet smell, they come however only in whites and many different shades of pink, there are also some white ones with streaks of yellow.

Longiflorum – sometimes called the November lily because in Australia flower naturally in November. They have a large trumpeted flower with 2 to 4 buds on a stem and primarily in whites.

LongiflorumXAsiatic – This type is fairly new and is a cross between an Longiflorum and Asiatic, it shows the characteristics of a larger bud and produces a small amount of fragrance. They did until now only come in creams and yellows, but now we see a new range of colours being introduced