Wild Lily: L. nepalense D. Don 1821

A genuine trumpet-type lily, even if the trumpet is wide-open and the petals strongly recurved. There are one to five drooping, pea-green

flowers dark-purple within, loosely arranged on the stem, 4 feet tall, which also bears broad lanceolate leaves. The bulb is flat and round, with broad, overlapping and tightly closed white scales, slightly tinged

with pink. The stem runs up to 5 feet underground, and forms bulb-lets on the internodcs before rising to the surface. A comparative late starter, which does not produce shoots until May, but nevertheless flowers during July.

L. nepalense is not winter-hardy in northern and central Europe, although it overwinters, without surface protection, in Scotland and Oregon. Surface protection from autumn and winter rains is necessary. This very exotic lily is a native of Nepal, Bhutan and Kumaon.

L. nepalense var. concolor originates from Assam, is self-coloured, yellow, and without the purple throat.

In spite of repeated endeavours, breeders have had little success in crossing this lily with other funnel-shaped types. The only reports are from Tuffery of New Zealand, who has produced hybrids with L. forntosanum, and from Palmer about Warburton hybrids arising from L. regale x L. nepalense x L. x anrelianensc. (RI-1S-LYB 1951-52, 1954, 1956, 1962; International Lily Register)

L. nepalense var. robustum. A recently introduced form with pendulous, strongly reflexed, emerald flowers with purplc-violet centres and of pleasing fragrance. It is said that this form is less susceptible to frost, and may even tolerate sub-zero temperatures. The stem runs underground

before rising to the surface, and the first growing shoots do not appear until May. Flowers during July/August, requires deep, very well-drained yet damp soil.

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