No garden is complete without a few lilies with their dramatic flowers and heady fragrance. The lilies discussed below are the true lilies grown from bulbs as opposed to the many other plants with similar names such as daylilies, water lilies and lilies of the valley. Apart from the three main types listed above in the title there are also hybrids formed from crosses between them to produce at least seven distinct varieties. All is explained in this article by Kath LaLiberte which I found on the Longfield Gardens website.
It?s pretty easy to tell?the difference between daylilies (hemerocallis) and true lillies (lilium). What gets tricky is?trying to tell one true lily from another ? even though they?have different growth habits, look quite different from each other and flower?at different times during the summer. Being able to tell them apart is important if you want to have the full lily experience?? which means having lilies?in bloom?from June through August! Here?s a quick visual guide to the wonderful world of lilies:
Asiatic lilies are the first lilies of the season and usually start flowering in June, right after the peonies. They?are also the shortest type of lily, typically standing about 2 to 3 feet tall. The upward-facing flowers come in many different colors, from white through yellow, orange, pink, red and deep burgundy. An?Asiatic lily?does?not have a fragrance, but the?flowers add bold, bright color to early summer gardens. They also grow very well in containers and make great cut flowers.
Asiatic-Oriental lilies are relatively recent hybrids that combine the brilliant colors of Asiatic lilies with the larger flowers and taller stature of an Oriental lily. They were developed for the cut flower industry, but in addition to being great for bouquets, they are also excellent garden plants. An?Oriental-Asiatic hybrid lily (AO)?is usually?3 to 4 feet tall, which is a perfect height for perennial gardens. They also grow very well in containers. Shown above is ?Kaveri?.
Trumpet lilies begin blooming in midsummer. The flowers have long, narrow trumpets and come in white, cream, yellow, peach and pink. Trumpet lilies tower over other perennials, often reaching a height of 4 to 6 feet. Their flowers are deeply fragrant, and just a few plants will perfume your entire garden ? especially in the evening. Shown above?is trumpet lily ?Golden Splendor?.
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