Panhandle lily finds a home at the OPGC

June 25, 2012

The genus Lilium is one of the priority genera for the OPGC.  A recent article in the Quarterly Bulletin of the North American Lily Society (Vol 66, No. 2) describe some of the work Peter Zale has been doing with the rare panhandle lily.  Here's an excerpt from the introduction:

"Lilium iridollae is, for many a lily enthusiast, an almost mythical plant. Described in detail in 1946 by its discovered, Mary Gibson Henry, it has since languished in near obscurity as shown by the few studies that have been reported in the decades following it’s discovery… Interest in this rare but fascinating species is mounting… It’s rarity demands conservation attention especially by preserving the unique habitats it inhabits but also by preservation ex situ, in gene banks such as the Ornamental Plant Germplasm Center. L. iridollae has potential as a stunning component of native plant gardens although it has earned a reputation for being challenging, but it also holds promise as a source of heat-tolerance traits that can be incorporated into Lilium hybrids."