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Genus Lilium Family Liliaceae

Description: Clump-forming herb; bulb with numerous imbricate fleshy scales; above-ground parts annual; roots fibrous; stem unbranched, erect or ascending.

Leaves numerous, alternate, opposite or sometimes ± whorled, sessile; axillary bulbs sometimes produced.

Inflorescence terminal, racemose, spicate subumbellate or flower solitary. Flowers bisexual, actinomorphic, usually large, often funnel-shaped, white or brightly coloured; subtended by leaf-like bracts. Tepals 6, free, nectariferous at base. Stamens 6; anthers versatile, dehiscing by slits, introrse. Ovary superior, cylindrical; loculi 3; style 1, elongate; stigma capitate, 3-lobed or 3-fid; placentation axile.

Fruit a loculicidal capsule; seeds numerous, winged.


Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 75 species, temperate regions of Northern Hemisphere. Australia: 1 species (naturalized).

Text by G. J. Harden (1993); edited KL Wilson (June 2008)
Taxon concept:

 Key to the species 
1Perianth white Lilium formosanum
Perianth orange with darker spotsLilium lancifolium

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