A hard-working, driven, wonderfully generous woman passed away today. She absolutely loved lilies, especially Asiatic lilies. Today's Daily Doodle is in her honor.
There are a number of lily species...and their seemingly countless hybrids. Additionally, there are many plants with “lily” in the name, but most are not “true lilies.” True lilies grow from onion-like bulbs and are of the genus Lilium. Lilies are perennial flowers that will return year after year and require minimal care, provided that you plant them in the right place.
The asiatic hybrids are among the earliest to bloom, and also the easiest of lilies to grow! You can plant these lilies almost anywhere. They have the broadest color range of any division of lily, including whites, pinks, plums, yellows, oranges, and reds. They have upfacing, outfacing, or pendant flowers, and typically have no fragrance.
According to the Farmer's Almanac, there are nine divisions of "true lilies" which bloom from late Spring through Fall. Asiatic lilies bloom first in early summer (in May or June), right after peonies. They are not difficult to keep as long as they are grown in well-draining soil. They are the shortest type of lily (usually 2 to 3 feet tall but range from 1-6 feet) and come in many colors, from white, to pastel to tropical. They don’t have much of a fragrance due to intense breeding, but they do add bright color to the garden and are a favorite with flower arrangers. Easter lilies are most commonly grown indoors as a holiday plant. As their name suggests, they are typically forced into bloom around Easter, in March or April. Outdoors, they are better suited for warmer regions of North America, where they can be planted in the garden after blooming has finished. If left outside, Easter lilies will likely bloom in late Summer. Oriental lilies have that famously strong fragrance. They are tall and stately (usually 4 feet with a range from 2-8 feet), and tend to grow more slowly, often blooming about the time when Asiatic lily flowers are fading (mid- to late-summer). They are mostly white, pink, red, or bi-colored and bloom late Summer to Fall. Trumpet lilies are similar to oriental lilies, producing many blooms with a nice scent. Their flowers tend to be smaller and more closed (like a trumpet) than those of the other lilies. They tend to bloom mid-summer.
As previously mentioned, there are flowers named "lily" that aren't in fact, lilies. Though their names are deceptive, daylilies, peace lilies, canna lilies, water lilies, lily-of-the-valley, and calla lilies are not true lilies, though their flowers are still captivating.