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Lilium martagon

Common turkscap lily

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Key information

Plant type

Summer/autumn blooming bulb

Flower colour



Scented flowers



Skill level


photo by John Glover, copyright GAP Photos (19192)

Plant details

This European lily is a native of woodlands and deciduous forests, and also grows well in taller grass. As a result, it is a wonderful variety for naturalising near shrubs and trees, or in a wildflower garden where it can be planted in groups that are then left undisturbed. The bulbs are very shallow and are best kept away from cultivated borders where they may be damaged. The strange opulent colouring of the pendent flowers endears them even to gardeners who do not like the strong scent, and when planted in groups they can make a bold statement.

Family: Liliaceae

Genus: Lilium

Species: martagon

Plant type: Summer/autumn blooming bulb

Flower colour: Purple

Foliage colour: Dark green

Feature: Scented flowers

Sun exposure: Full sun, Partial shade

Soil: Well-drained/light, Dry, Sandy

Hardiness: Hardy

Skill level: Beginner

Height: 150cm

Spread: 30cm

Time to plant seeds: September to May

Time to divide plants: September to November

Flowering period: July to August

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