Carolina Lily (Lilium michauxii)

The Carolina Lily is a scarce and exciting flower that can be found in dry woods in July and August. It has one to six blossoms at the summit of its stem. This magnificent flower is yellow to reddish-orange, spotted with brown. The six tepals (3 petals and 3 sepals) are strongly reflexed (bent back), and six slender filaments topped by brown anthers protrude from the center of the flower, as does a long style with a three-lobed stigma. Each nodding flower is about three inches in diameter.

The fleshy leaves have smooth margins and occur in whorls along the sturdy 1 to 4 foot stem. Each leaf is about 3 inches long and 1/2 to 3/4 inches wide, broadest above the middle.

The lily comes from a scaly bulb and can be propagated by scale division or by seed. It is an attractive plant and worthy of cultivation. Plant in a well-prepared soil with plenty of organic matter worked into it. Several hours a day of sunlight are necessary for blooms.

It was named for the French botanist, Andre Michaux, who traveled widely in the southeastern United States.