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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Friday - November 02, 2007

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Propagation
Title: Propagation of lilies by seed
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have collected a large number of lily seeds. How can I get them to grow?

ANSWER:

We were not sure if you were referring to native or non-native lilies. We learned in our research that many of the lilies that are grown in gardens today are the non-native Asian or Oriental lilies. At the same time, there are a great many lilies native to North America, and since the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to promoting and protecting plants native to North America, we hope that is what you have chosen to raise. When we looked into the Wildflower Center Native Plant Database, typing in "lily" in the plant search field, we got back 134 results, all lilies native to North America. You can look through these, perhaps learn the names of the lilies from which you have harvested seeds, and read the information about where that specific lily is most comfortable growing. Unfortunately, many of the North American native lilies are naturally distributed only in California or the Pacific Northwest. We did discover some that are found in Texas, including Erythronium albidum (white fawnlily), Habranthus tubispathus (Rio Grande copperlily), and Hymenocallis galvestonensis (Galveston spiderlily) .

Apparently, it does not really matter if they are native or not, the planting of lilies by seeds is done much the the same way. Rather than paraphrase already well-written materials, let us direct you to two links on planting lilies from seeds. The first is The Lily Nook, the second is Lilyseeds.com.

 


Erythronium albidum

Habranthus tubispathus

Hymenocallis galvestonensis

 

 

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