Tiger Lilies, Oniyuri
Japan is a land where flowers are loved, and the lilies are a favorite summer flower. Lily is called "yuri" in Japanese, and the 15 species found here can be seen fom Hokkaido to Okinawa (thatÂs a formidable range of climates, equivalent to the range from northern Maine to south Florida). Even the Easter Lily of the west is in fact a Japanese native.
The Tiger Lily, Lilium lancifolium, is a common plant in the west as well, but is in fact probably a Chinese native. It was brought to Japan initially as a food plant, but today is mostly used as an ornamental. Japanese plants donÂt form seeds, so they must be grown from dividing the bulbs, or by the little bulbs that form on the base of the leaves. This species is called "oniyuri" named after devil-like beasts with red faces called "oni". The closest equivalent in the west to an oni might be a gremlin, but oni are much bigger and full of mischief. HereÂs a large clump growing near my house.
A little closer:
If you want to read a nice page on Japanese Lilies then check this out. Of course many hybrids abound here as well. In spring bulbs are available everywhere at really cheap prices ($1-3 each for huge bulbs, depending on the variety). They are great plants! PF
Here is a link that might be useful: Japanese Lilies