Advancing the Conservation, Study, and Cultivation of the Flora of Asia

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Peggy Schafer 
(of the Chinese Medicinal Herb Farm) 
Sondra Beam 
(Herbalist at Crane West Herb Pharmacy)

Sunday, October 19, 2014
10:00 - Noon

Spotlight Plant 

Lilium formosanum

(QBG #1990.217)

1990.217 fl lm_1.jpg

This Quarryhill accession derives from open-pollinated (non-wild) seed collected here in the garden from parent plants grown from seed collected by Roger Warner on October 18, 1987 from a naturalized population found at 310 meters elevation in a mixed forest of the Tsuge District in Aichi Prefecture on Honshu Island, Japan.

This late-season bloomer produces stems 120-150 cm tall, sometimes tinged purple-red, with lanceolate-shaped leaves, 2.5-15 cm long by 4-13 mm wide.  Long, trumpet-like flowers, usually solitary, are fragrant and funnelform with white tepals tinged purple-red, the outer ones oblanceolate, 11.5-14.5 cm long by 2.1-2.3 cm wide, and the inner ones spatulate, up to 3 cm wide.  Filaments are about 10 cm in length and the style is about 6.5 cm long.  Seed capsules are 7-9 cm x ca 2 cm and divided into three 2-part sections.  Flowers and capsules appear June - December, with early flowering seen, at times, even within the first year after germination.

Lilium formosanum is particularly susceptible to viral infections, rapidly showing symptoms, and is thus useful as an indicator plant for the presence of viral pathogens.  The species is relatively less cold-hardy among lilies, but can flower almost year-round in subtropical climates, preferring full sun exposure and moderate water in well-draining soils.  It is native to grassy slopes and seashores of Taiwan, from sea level to 3,500 meters elevation, though it has also naturalized in mainland China, Japan and Australia.


Founded in 1987, Quarryhill is one of the pre-eminent Asian botanical gardens globally, featuring one of the largest collections of documented, wild-collected Asian plants in the world. It is centrally located for Sonoma, Marin and Napa counties as well as greater Northern California. 

Quarryhill's core programs include:

The garden welcomes visitors and is open year-round.

Currently of Interest in the Garden
Plant Name
Common Name

Belamcanda chinensis

Blackberry Lily



Lilium formosanum



Aralia elata

Japanese Angelica Tree


Patrinia scabiosifolia


Dianthus superbus

IMG_3107.JPG Lilium speciosum var. speciosum