Jun 17 2012

Railroad Lilies

Published by at 7:30 am under Plants

When I was growing up I didn't know the name of these common summer flowers. Later on I learned to call them Railroad Lilies.

Their real name is Orange Daylilies (Hemerocallis fulva) and they're a garden plant gone wild.  As a cultivar from East Asia, their seeds are sterile so they spread by fibrous roots and rhizomes.  Once established, they're hard to get rid of and are even considered invasive in Wisconsin.  (In Pennsylvania they're on the invasive species Watch List.)

Their last name, daylily, comes from the fact that each flower blooms for only one day.  Their choice of habitat earned them two nicknames:  Ditch Lily and Railroad Lily.

They're blooming now in Pennsylvania.  Despite their weedy reputation they certainly dress up the landscape.

(photo from Wikimedia Commons. Click on the image to see the original)

7 responses so far

7 Responses to “Railroad Lilies”

  1. Marcy Con 18 Jun 2012 at 8:52 am

    I love to put ditch liles in a vase and enjoy their day only blossom, but it’s very bright and cheerful.

  2. Rob Protzon 18 Jun 2012 at 11:00 am

    I always call them Tiger Lillies! Love that color. And Marcy’s right, they really do dress up an interior, especially if you can get one with multiple buds and they’ll keep opening for days.

  3. Kate St. Johnon 18 Jun 2012 at 11:07 am

    At one point I called them Tiger Lilies but those are native wildflowers with a lot more pizazz: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lilium_superbum

  4. Rob Protzon 18 Jun 2012 at 12:31 pm

    Well now, that IS interesting. I did not know that Turk’s Cap was also called Tiger Lilly!

  5. Donnaon 18 Jun 2012 at 3:40 pm

    I also thought they were called tiger lilies. One year I found a Turk’s cap lily in my garden & wondered where it had come from since I had never planted any! Unfortunately, it did not return the following year 🙁

  6. Kate St. Johnon 18 Jun 2012 at 3:43 pm

    Turk’s cap lilies are really beautiful. (I never knew they were also called Tiger Lilies.) I’ve seen them growing at Ohiopyle State Park. The deer like to ready the flowers when they are in full bloom. It’s a real drag to see!

  7. Marcy Con 18 Jun 2012 at 8:10 pm

    I called them Tiger Lilies also, but never called the Turk’s Cap one…way too beautiful and takes much longer to bloom. Before we moved from the old place, my Turk’s Cap Lily I transplanted 7 years before, had 10 blossoms…it was wonderful, but I wasn’t able to get it and transplant it to our new place…still need some of these in the yard…There’s also a Canada Lily that is red that blooms about the same time as the Turk’s Cap….usually found both of these around damp areas in shade or dappled shade…

Comments RSS

Leave a Reply