Lilies can be grouped into two distinct types: Oriental and Asiatic. Oriental lilies are richly fragrant and have large flowers in shades of pink. They thrive in acidic soils and so are usually grown in containers of ericaeous compost.
Asiatic lilies tend to have smaller flowers that are not scented. They come in a greater variety of colours including yellow, orange, red and almost-black. They thrive in alkaline soil and are extremely hardy. Grow them in the garden or in pots of peat-free multipurpose compost.
Lilium ‘Cocopa’ is a vibrant Asiatic lily that bears deep pink, bowl-shaped flowers. The bulbs are best planted in autumn while they’re still plump.
Lilium ‘Cocopa’: deep-pink bowl-shaped bloom
Lilium ‘Yelloween’ bears pretty yellow blooms with a green-yellow midrib. A tall-growing Asiatic variety, ‘Yelloween’ is perfect for growing in a mixed herbaceous border and makes a fantastic cut flower.
Pale yellow blooms of Lilium ‘Yelloween’
Lilium ‘Sorbonne’ bears bright pink, fragrant blooms with a white margin. A tall-growing Oriental variety, ‘Sorbonne’ is perfect for growing in a mixed herbaceous border and makes a fantastic cut flower.
A bright pink, white-edged bloom of Lilium ‘Sorbonne’
Lilium ‘Black Mamba’
Lilium ‘Black Mamba’ has dramatic dark purple flowers with contrasting bright orange anthers. It’s ideal for growing in ornamental displays with lighter-flowered lilies, and looks great in a vase.
Lily ‘Black Mamba’
Lilium ‘Nymph’ is an oriental variety. It grows to a staggering height of up to 200cm, and bears large, strongly scented, pale lemon yellow flowers with a pink stripe along each petal.
Lilium ‘Nymph’: pale yellow petals with pink centres
Lilium ‘Arbatax’ is a hybrid Asiatic lily. Flowers are large, pink with white centres and a gentle fragrance.
Lilium ‘Arbatax’: large pink flower with a white centre
Lilium ‘Casa Blanca’
Lilium ‘Casa Blanca’ is a classic Oriental lily with fragrant, pure white flowers and dark red stamens. Flowers grow on tall stems from mid- to late summer.
Pure white flowers of Lilium ‘Casa Blanca’
Lilium ‘Belonica’ is an Oriental lily, which bears fantastic fragrant, pollen-free double flowers in shades of pink.
Pollen-free pink double flowers of Lilium ‘Belonica’
Lilium ‘Dot Com’
Lilium ‘Dot Com’ bears pink to white flowers with a mass of bright maroon speckling towards the centre. Growing to a height of just 40cm, ‘Dot Com’ is perfect for growing at the front of a border or in containers.
Maroon-speckled white blooms of Lilium ‘Dot Com’
Lilium ‘Neopolitano’ is a multi-coloured hybrid lily bearing white flowers with pink margins and a yellow centre to each petal.
Lilium ‘Neopolitano’: white petals with pink margins and yellow centres