Wild Lily: L.japonicnni Thunberg 1780

The Japanese call this lily Sasa-Yuri (Bamboo Lily). It grows on Honshu at 3,000 feet above sea level, mostly on east and north-facing slopes among bamboo and rhododendron.

The ovoid, cream-white bulbs, approximately ½ inches in diameter, consist of small, long, sweet-tasting scales, and are used as food. Few lanceolate leaves arise from the thin stem, 1-3 feet high. It has between one and three short, bell-shaped trumpet flowers, pure-pink or white in colour, which appear from May to August, depending on altitude. Red-brown pollen, self-fertile, slow germination.

Although plentiful in nature, L. japonicum proves difficult in cultivation; even the Japanese grow it in only minor quantities. The mature plants, as well as bulb scales used for multiplication, are very prone to fusarium attack. The temperature of the soil should not exceed 59 DEG F (15 deg C). To emulate this natural habitat the bulb should be planted very deep in a soil consisting of sandy loam with liberal additions of powdered charcoal and leaf-mould, on slopes facing north in half shade between grass and shrubs. Ralph Warner reports that the best results are obtained if the bulb is planted near a ditch through which cold water continually flows. It crosses with L. riibelluin, L. auratum, L. spcciosuni, and apparently also with L. cernuum and L. wallichianum – all lilies without carotcnoid content, (NALS-LYB 1956, Moto’o Shimizu; NALS-LYB 1962)

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.