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What's the difference?............

Posted by MadcityMike z5 Wi (My Page) on
Tue, Sep 20, 05 at 21:42

I love lillies, so a few years ago we dedicated a small area of the garden to lillies. Without having a clue as to what I was doing, I just ordered a bunch of different ones and planted them. They are doing beautifully now that I've fenced them in so that the bunnies can't eat them. At this point I can't possibly hope to identify all of them, but now I'm curious as to how I can differentiate between an oriental and an asiatic lily. Is there a simple rule of thumb to tell them apart? T.I.A.

Mike


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: What's the difference?............

Hi Mike. In general, the asiatics bloom earlier, usually June to mid-July, and have little or no fragrance. The orientals bloom mid-July to August and are usually extremely fragrant. My orientals send their fragrance all the way up and into the second story windows of my house. They're wonderful!


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RE: What's the difference?............

Asiatics are also usually smooth-petaled, whereas Orientals have lumpy bumpy things on the petals, especially near the center of the flower. Also, while Asiatics *tend* to run to red-orange-yellow-white (yes, there are burgundy, rose and pink Asiatics, too) with upfacing vase-shaped flowers, the Orientals run to white, pink and red tones (a few exceptions for yellow, but no orange as far as I know) with reflexed (curved-back) petals.

Yes, there are lots of Asiatics with downfacing flowers and recurved petals--for every rule there's an exception--but they generally come from more specialized growers. As NancyBeth mentioned above, the orientals are nearly universally fragrant, and the Asiatics are nearly all scentless.


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RE: What's the difference?............

Thanks, that helps a lot!

Mike


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RE: What's the difference?............

The ones that are still thriving are Asiatics. The ones that have died are Orientals. ;^)


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RE: What's the difference?............

When they come up in the spring, you can identify them by the emerging foliage.

An asiatic comes up looking like this:

A trumpet lily looks like 'Cousin It' on the Addams Family when it first emerges:

Orientals come out of the ground like little torpedos; note the one at lower left just emerging. Then the foliage, longer leaves than an asiatic. begin to grow horizontally.


Hope this will help you identify your lilies.

Nell


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