Flowers

“Black Beauty” Lily – a New Addition to Our Garden.

Close up on the "Black Beauty" oriental lily in the Niagara Park's Botanical Gardens.
Close up on the “Black Beauty” oriental lily in the Niagara Park’s Botanical Gardens.

I have just purchased a few days ago two Black Beauty Lilies from our local Vandermeer Nursery. I was looking for them for a while after I have seen them blooming very abundantly at the Niagara Park’s Botanical Gardens last summer. They were growing along many other perennials in Niagara Park’s Botanical Gardens adding a lot to this summer garden design.

“Black Beauty” is an amazing looking Oriental hybrid lily, which was created by crossing L. henryi with L. speciosum. I really like their elegant look and dark pink-burgundy colours with some touches of white at the edges of the petals and in the center. The flowers are about 3″ in size, with protruding, long anthers and small green centers and grow on rigid stems which can reach 4-7’. They hold their heads slightly facing down and can grow in big clusters, as you can see in the photos in this article. These lilies typically flower in mid-summer around July-August and mature plants can produce from 20-50 blooms. The flowers can not only decorate the garden, but also can be cut for displays in a vase.

 

Another view on "Black Beauty" oriental hybrid lilies blooming in Niagara Park's Botanical Gardens in August 2017. Niagara region, Canada.
Another view on “Black Beauty” oriental hybrid lilies blooming in Niagara Park’s Botanical Gardens in August 2017. Niagara region, Canada.

Oriental lilies often have strong, overpowering smell, but I don’t think it is the case with this kind of lilies, at least I didn’t notice any strong scent coming from them while visiting this garden.

How to Grow Black Beauty Lilly.

They can be grown outdoors from zone 3-8, so are quite resistant to cold. As with many other bulbs, it is important to plant them in well drained soil.  They like medium moisture and could be grown in full sun or partial shade. “Black Beauties”, belonging to family of plants called Liliaceae, are usually easy to grow if you provide such conditions and a rich, organic soil.  These flowers prefer to have their roots in the shade and the upper part in the sun, so mulching around the roots is a good idea to create some shade, or plant them behind other lower perennials which will shade their roots.

Their bulbs could be planted in the fall or early spring about 4-6″ deep, or plant potted lilies any time from spring to fall. It is best to plant them in groups of 3 or more for the best display spacing them about 12″ apart.  Make sure you provide good moisture since they don’t like dry soil, but do not over-water or the bulbs can rot. Taller plants may need staking, especially if you grow them in more shady or windy conditions since in the shade their stems could be weaker.

Deadhead the flowers once spent to prevent seeds from spreading, but do not cut the leaves till they and the stems turn yellow to allow the plants to regenerate after flowering. In time, “Black Beauty” can naturalize in your garden producing many new bulbs.

“Black Beauties” can be even grown in pots, but in this case, flowers will be a bit smaller. Make sure you provide good winter protections for the pots or the bulbs can freeze.

These lilies could be susceptible to lily mosaic virus, which can be spread by aphids, so make sure you control these insects. Also they could be attacked by the Botrytis – plant pathogenic fungus.

A closes view on the "Black Beauties" lilies, Niagara Park's Botanical Gardens, Niagara region, Canada.
A closes view on the “Black Beauties” lilies, Niagara Park’s Botanical Gardens, Niagara region, Canada.

 Is Black Beauty Lily Worth Growing in the Garden?

I think it is certainly worth a try if you like it and live in zone 3-8.  I will see how it will be doing in our garden and we are in zone 5b. We have here many daylilies and they grow like crazy multiplying each year and we also have many other bulbs, including a few other lilies, tulips, hyacinths, irises etc.  We usually have more than enough moisture, particularly during this spring, and when the weather is sometimes dry we will keep and eye on them and water when necessary, so the soil will not dry out.  I will keep you posted and perhaps show you some of their pictures later when hopefully they will be blooming in our garden during this summer.

Do you have such flowers in your garden already? How are they growing in your garden? Please share your thought and experience about this plant with us.

Black Beauty oriental hybrid lilies blooming in Niagara Park's Botanical Gardens in August 2017. Niagara region, Canada.
Black Beauty oriental hybrid lilies blooming in Niagara Park’s Botanical Gardens in August 2017. Niagara region, Canada.

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The Copyright.

All photographs and this article are copyrighted by me, Renata Ratajczyk. I you would like to use any of them in your publications or on your website, please contact me.

Other Articles You Might Also Like to Read.

  1. Visiting Niagara Park’s Botanical Gardens, Part 1.
  2. Visiting Niagara Park’s Botanical Gardens, Part 2.
  3. A Beautiful Italian Garden For You to Visit – “Giardino Sigurtà” in Valeggio sul Mincio, Northern Italy.
  4. Sweet Mock Orange – smelling like jasmin spring flowering shrub.
  5. Memorial Day Rose.
  6. Growing Eden – Climbing Rose.

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