Theodore Payne California Native Plant Database




Lilium pardalinum 'Giganteum'

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Lilium pardalinum 'Giganteum'
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Lilium pardalinum 'Giganteum'

Species Name: Lilium pardalinum 'Giganteum'
Common Name: Giganteum Leopard Lily

Grows in moist areas. Flowers are amazing---brilliant orange and red with leopard-like spots. This selection is more stout and has larger flowers than the species.

Plant Family: Liliaceae
Plant Type: Bulb
Height by Width: 2' H x 1' W
Growth Habit: Tall flower stalks
Deciduous/Evergreen: Summer dormant
Growth Rate: Moderate
Sun Exposure: Part sun to shade
Soil Preference: Well-draining
Water Requirements: Moderate to regular
Cold Hardy to: 6,000'
Flower Season: Spring
Flower Color: Red/Orange spotted
Endangered?: Not listed
Distribution: Throughout the California Floristic Province
Natural Habitat: Moist places, along streambanks, along coast, below 6,000'

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History
This plant has an unusual history, more so than most any in the California flora. Lilium pardalinum 'Giganteum' is known also as L. pardalinum var. giganteum and L. harrisianum. Both of these names indicate that it was recognized, for a time, as a species and variety, rather than as a selection of the species. But it didn't start that way. When it first began to gain broad attention from a plant behind a barn in Oregon, none other than Luther Burbank claimed responsibility for this plant, identifying it as one of his hybrids. But that story was contradicted by a lily enthusiast in Humboldt County, Lee Harris, who recognized the plant from a population of lilies along the Van Duzen River. It was later named for Harris. But over the years, any number of lilies identified as species were eventually gathered under the name Lilium pardalinum, including this particular selection. Further, this particular plant was identified as simply a selection, albeit an outstanding selection, of the species itself. The selection name 'Giganteum', in single quotes, is now generally accepted as its name. In the past, the selection names 'Chinook', 'Sunset', and 'Red Giant' were also variously used.
Other Names
Lilium harrisianum or L. harrisonianum
Lilium pardalinum var. giganteum
'Chinook'
'Sunset'
'Red Giant
'Red Sunset'
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