Skip to main content

Plants We Love: Turk's Cap Lily (Lilium superbum)

Common name: Turk's cap lily, turban lily, swamp lily

Botanical name:
Lilium superbum

Virtues: Large, bright flowers with a distinctive shape. Blooms for about a month during the summer.

Flowers: The single main stem is topped with groups of 4-inch-wide flowers. Flowers are orange with dark spots. They face downward, with 6 tepals that curve sharply back and long dark stamens that extend below. The center of the flower has a green star.

Unbranched perennial to 7 feet tall. Grows from a bulb.

Season: Early- through midsummer

Origin: Wet meadows, swamps and woods of southern New England south to Alabama and Georgia.

Cultivation: Grow in full to part sun, in rich, moist soil. Once established it will tolerate some drought. May require staking. USDA Zones 4–7.

Image attribution and rights


Download our January 2010 issue, which includes the special section "Plants We Love: 50 Great Natives, Award-Winning Plants and New Introductions"

Find out how to propagate lilies and more with our Propagation download.