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'L. columbianum' (Species or Wild Lily)
With the widest range of the Western North American species, Lilium columbianum can be found from Northern California to British Columbia. Some of the most spectacular colonies of this dry land native can be found along the Redwood Highway in Northern California. A nearly impossible subject in the garden, it is best to simply enjoy it in its native realm. Though classified as "dry Land", we found one area in N. California where plants littered the edges of a stream bed with most bulbs covered by running water.
Inset is of photo taken of colony of Lilium columbianum found along the Coastal Redwood Highway SR101 in Northern California. There are numerous stands of Lilium columbianum that were bypassed in the mid 90's with a new, and much straighter highway that went over the mountain rather than around it, hugging the Pacific Coast. Before the bypass, stopping on this busy road was to risk life and limb. It is narrow and the big rigs traveling that desolate area had drivers that only knew "petal to the metal".
Photo inset #2 is of a flower found off hwy 101 south of Eureka showing exceptionally large spots with a solid brown/maroon center where all the spots ran together to make one big "blotch" of color. This particular stem produced flowers of a deeper golden-orange color than others found in the same stand.
Photo inset #3 is of a stem of L. columbianum as flowered and photographed by Gene Mirro in June of 2012.
Wild Lily bulbs making up the genus Lilium belong to the family Liliaceae comprising of approximately 200 genera made up of approximately 2,000 lily species. There are in the neighborhood of 110 to 120 Lilium species depending on whose classification you reference. For the full article, click Knowledge Base