Lilium wallichianum

Lilium wallichianum

If only we had more space to grow many liliums. Perhaps the garden needs a mezzanine floor.  Such a structure would solve most of our space problems… and grow more liliums.

There are plenty of online resources in relation to the selection and cultivation of species and hybrid liliums. You can also go retro by obtaining relatively cheap books on the subjects. In view of this our general comments will be brief.

Lliliums need a well-drained location with at least half a day of sunshine. If it’s too shady, the stems will stretch and lean towards the sun; trumpet lilies (regales) are the most shade sensitive. Lilies love full sun, as long as the bulbs are deep enough to keep cool when temperatures soar. Good air circulation and spacing of the plants will control disease. If you do see brown spots on the leaves, use any fungicide recommended for roses.

Description and Distribution:
It is native to the southern warmer slopes of the Himalaya from Northern India, through Nepal, Sikkim, Bhutan and as far as the eastern Indian state of Assam. It grows in well drained soil in light shade. Height is around 1.5m. Flowering occurs in early spring.

Background:
This species is named for Danish botanist Nathaniel Wallich, Director of the Calcutta Botanic Gardens. A very interesting was Mr. Wallich. Briefly.

Wallich studied medicine and botany in his native city, Copenhagen He graduated as an MD in 1806 and landed a position as surgeon to the Danish factory at Serampore, near Calcutta, in 1807. However,  as a result of the Danish alliance with Napoleonic France in 1808, the settlement was annexed by the East India Company and Wallich became a prisoner of war. William Roxburgh (refer Rose roxburghii), the Superintendent of the Royal Botanic Garden, Calcutta, requested that Wallich be allowed to enter the East India Co on the merit of his scholarship, and in March 1809 he began employment as Roxburgh’s assistant. Wallich became Superintendent of the Garden in 1815, leaving in 1816 and then returning in 1817. Wallich served in this post until 1846 when he finally left India.