Pitkin Marsh Lily

George grew this magnificent lily from seed that he got at the seed bank at the Tilden Park Botanic Garden in Berkeley. The flower bloomed today. A couple of days ago it was curled up tight:

The Pitkin Marsh lily, or Lilium pardalinum subsp. pitkinense, is an endangered perennial in the Liliaceae family. George tells me that there is a dispute about what family to put it into, that some think it should be with the leopard lilies. The individual flowers are relatively small, but the entire plant is tall, and filled with blooms and flowers.

According to Wikipedia, the habitat has been greatly reduced mostly due to cattle overgrazing, and partly because of collectors seeking it for its rarity and beauty.

The Tilden Botanic Garden sells plants and seeds at the Garden’s Visitor Center on Sundays and Mondays from 8:30 a.m to 5 p.m., at the Garden’s fall lectures, annual spring plant sale, and often at plant sales and fairs of the East Bay Chapter of the California Native Plant Society.

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