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Marvelous Martagons: Lilies for the Landscape

By magnolialover
July 6, 2015

In recent years, the use of the martagon lily in the landscape has made a bit of a comeback. For years, martagons had been given a bad reputation of being difficult to grow and too expensive. As a result, they became more difficult to obtain. As we celebrate lily week, we will take a look at these beautiful, graceful lilies that are perfect for the woodland setting. We celebrate their comeback and availability in commerce and we will share tips for planting them and ensuring their success.

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Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
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Bonehead
Jul 5, 2015 6:50 PM CST
What is a martagon lily? What differentiates it from other lilies? How many kinds of lilies are out there? So many questions...I will see what this week brings.

I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Connie
Willamette Valley OR (Zone 8a)
Forum moderator Hybridizer Region: Pacific Northwest Lilies Sempervivums Sedums
Pollen collector I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier
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pardalinum
Jul 6, 2015 1:00 AM CST
Deb, hybrid lilies are classified into eight divisions with most of garden lily commerce involved in six of them. These are the Asiatic hybrids, martagon hybrids, American hybrids, trumpet/aurelian hybrids, Oriental hybrids and interspecific or interdivisional hybrids.

The martagon species is native to Eurasian areas of limestone hills and mountains, hence they require an alkaline soil.
Name: Linda
southern Minn. (Zone 4b)
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alwaysbehindMN
Jul 6, 2015 4:52 AM CST
Martagon lilies most certainly do add much to the shade garden landscape! A few years ago I started noticing seedlings appearing in random spots in my hosta glade and one actually bloomed right next to cultivar 'Rosalinda'. I had thought it was an additional stem and what a surprise it was to see the deep red flowers next to the pink Rosalinda! I am pretty sure that one is a seedling from 'dahlhansonii' which is growing in a magnificent clump about 20 ft. away.
This year I had at least 12 seedlings bloom for the first time!
Here are pictures of 5 of them. And they seem to appear very effectively in places where I perhaps would not have thought of planting them!
Thumb of 2015-07-06/alwaysbehindMN/2fc633


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Thumb of 2015-07-06/alwaysbehindMN/ce1542

Name: Dirt
(Zone 5b)
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dirtdorphins
Jul 6, 2015 7:46 AM CST
Wonderful!
Do any of you have a recommended source for Martagons--I think I need to try some more nodding
Name: Tracey
Wisconsin (Zone 5a)
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magnolialover
Jul 6, 2015 8:20 AM CST
Old House Gardens
B&D Lilies
Your local Lily society sale
Tracey
Name: Betsy
Texas (Zone 9a)
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piksihk
Jul 6, 2015 10:19 AM CST
dirtdorphins said:Wonderful!
Do any of you have a recommended source for Martagons--I think I need to try some more nodding


Me, too! Lovey dubby
God writes the gospel not in the Bible alone, but on trees and flowers and clouds and stars. ~Author unknown, commonly attributed to Martin Luther
Name: Deb
Pacific Northwest (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Organic Gardener Herbs Dragonflies Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry
Birds Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Garden Sages Plant Identifier
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Bonehead
Jul 6, 2015 12:08 PM CST
Thanks for the info Connie. I'll steer away from martagons as I have decidedly acidic soil.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Connie
Willamette Valley OR (Zone 8a)
Forum moderator Hybridizer Region: Pacific Northwest Lilies Sempervivums Sedums
Pollen collector I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier
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pardalinum
Jul 6, 2015 12:13 PM CST
I don't grow them either but I sure do envy those who can. They are beautiful lilies.
Name: Dirt
(Zone 5b)
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Garden Photography Bee Lover Region: Utah Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Photo Contest Winner: 2015 Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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dirtdorphins
Jul 6, 2015 7:15 PM CST
Well I do have decidedly alkaline everything--so for once, this may be an option for me Smiling
(I was so heartbroken after planting a bunch of my favorite fragrant orientals when I first moved here and they turned yellow, and languished, and slowly died Crying )
Shade/part-shade and well-drained are rather limited conditions though--but at least that can change with time and work Thumbs up
Name: ursula
Chile (Zone 9b)
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Mutisia
Jul 6, 2015 7:41 PM CST
Dirt, the white Martagon Lily I gew from seeds is very happy in a large pot, under an Acacia caven tree that provides little shade. Our summers have been extremely hot and water has been very scarce.

NancyMcD
Jul 11, 2015 9:00 AM CST
Please don't let acidic soil keep you from trying martagons. Here in far northern Michigan our sandy soil is acidic, too, but martagons thrive here. In the garden, I add lime at planting time, but rarely think of it later, and they do fine. Another plus: of all the many lilies I've tried, martagons are the least favorite of the deer. Most lilies are just expensive deer food for us, but not these. They get munched occasionally, but not usually, and never enough to kill the plant. I love their little flowers that look as if they're carved from wax. Some varieties have a lovely fragrance, too.

For many years, I've thrown ripe seed out in our popple (quaking aspen) grove, and we now have martagons blooming there, too. Germination is slow, as the first year the seeds only put down a root, not growing a leaf until the second year. But what the heck, the years are going to pass anyway, you might as well sow lily seed and let them surprise you a few years down the line.

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