Find out how to Plant, Develop, and Take care of Turk’s Cap Lilies

Reaching heights of as much as 8 toes and producing as much as 40 flowers per plant, ‘Turk’s cap’ lilies are an enormous within the panorama. On sturdy stems with whorled foliage, 4-inch orange blooms droop downward like pendants and have petals that curl upward to offer the species (Lilium superbum) its ‘Turk’s cap’ nickname. 

Typically mistaken for ‘tiger lilies’ (Lilium lancifolium) due to their orange coloring and noticed petals, these crops are a lot bigger and have a penchant for wealthy, swampy soil. They’re simple to develop and make a daring assertion wherever they’re planted. Learn on for extra details about their historical past, rising preferences, upkeep necessities, and potential issues. 


A close-up of Turk's Cap Lily bloom, vivid pink petals adorned with deep pink spots, set against lush green foliage. The sunlight delicately bathes the flower, highlighting its intricate details amidst a soft-focus backdrop of foliage.
‘Turk’s cap’ lilies are Martagon lilies with reflexive orange-yellow flowers.

This lily species is hardy in zones 4-9 and blooms in early to mid-summer. Categorized as a Martagon lily by the North American Lily Society, ‘Turk’s cap’ is botanically named Lilium superbum and is a part of the Liliaceae household. 

The flowers have six reflexive petals, lengthy stamens, massive anthers, and freckles on their throats. The official flower is orange-yellow with a inexperienced stamen, rust-colored anthers, and maroon freckles, however the species has been hybridized to incorporate some extra cultivars with broader coloration choices (see Varieties beneath). 

These lilies will flower finest in full solar, however the species tolerates shade higher than different teams and might be planted in areas with dappled mild. Plant measurement and bloom depth could also be compromised, however they may nonetheless develop and be wholesome. 

They’re set other than different lily species by their tolerance for moist or loamy soil. Nicknamed the swamp lily, they develop properly subsequent to creeks and in lowland areas however won’t tolerate standing water. They’re closely featured in gardens up and down the Atlantic coast and are a magnet for bees, hummingbirds, and butterflies.  

Historical past & Cultivation

A close-up of a white Turk's cap lily displaying its delicate features, notably the lengthy stamen, set against a blurred backdrop of dense, verdant foliage. The flower's pure white hue stands out amidst the lush greenery that surrounds it.
This species is native to North America’s wetlands and has historic roots in colonial gardens.

Whereas the overarching Lilium genus dates again to historic Greece, the Lilium superbum species is native to the jap meadows and wetlands of North America. Historic accounts of Colonial America reference its inclusion in formal and casual gardens.

All through the centuries, botanists crossed superbum with different lily species to create a handful of hybrid cultivars. Though well-liked and much-coveted for his or her massive measurement and colourful variations, these cultivars usually are not as hardy or long-living as the unique superbum natives. 


Lilies might be planted at any time in the course of the rising season when you’re keen to offer them a little bit further consideration, however spring and fall are the perfect occasions to put in perennials. This provides roots time to ascertain earlier than crops are uncovered to excessive temperatures in the course of the peak season. You may develop them from seeds or bulbs; alternatively, buy established crops. Right here’s a have a look at the method for every:

Established Crops

Towering Turk's Cap plants showcase elegant purple flowers gracefully drooping, creating a captivating display. The backdrop reveals a vibrant tapestry of lush foliage, providing a rich and vibrant setting for these stunning botanical specimens.
Planting ‘Turk’s cap’ lilies acquired out of your backyard heart is easy.

Lilies bought from a backyard heart, divided from an overgrown cluster, or gifted from a neighbor would require a little bit extra sweat fairness than bulbs or seeds, however planting them is fairly easy.

Listed here are the steps:

  1. Dig a gap that’s twice the width and equal to the peak of the basis mass.
  2. Take away your ‘Turk’s cap’ from its rising container if it has one, and loosen any roots which can be circling or compacted beneath the bulb.
  3. Set the basis mass within the gap, so your lily’s crown sits simply above soil stage.
  4. Backfill loosely with soil and water frequently till roots are established.


A close-up of three Turk's cap lily bulbs resting on a woven tray. Freshly dug, these bulbs retain traces of dark, nutrient-rich soil, poised to be planted and nurtured for their blossoming journey ahead.
To plant its bulbs efficiently, select a sunny spot with good soil.

The bulbs are simple to plant and develop in a mattress with adequate solar publicity and optimum soil. For a pure look, plant lily bulbs in odd-numbered teams or clusters somewhat than rows.

Listed here are the steps for planting Lilium superbum bulbs:

  1. Loosen the soil to a depth of about twelve inches.
  2. Use a hand trowel or bulb digger to create holes which can be roughly six inches deep.
  3. Area bulbs 12 to 18 inches aside.
  4. Place one ‘Turk’s cap’ bulb in every gap with the flat facet down and the sharp find yourself.
  5. Cowl loosely with filth and water evenly.


An opened lily seed pod in close-up, displaying its interior filled with small seeds. Delicate pods hang gracefully from slender stems, showcasing the intricate design of the pod's contents against a soft green background.
They are often grown from seed, however flowering might take as much as seven years.

‘Turk’s cap’ lilies can be planted from seed, though it could be as much as seven years earlier than they flower. Lily seeds require a interval of chilly stratification to germinate.

To develop ‘Turk’s cap’ from seed, comply with these steps:

  1. Fill a shallow, well-draining container with seed beginning combine.
  2. Sprinkle ‘Turk’s cap’ seeds on the soil floor and press in gently with the tip of your finger.
  3. Cowl loosely with plastic and retailer in a cool, darkish place for 8-12 weeks. Purpose for soil temperatures which can be round 40-45 levels.
  4. Mist soil sometimes to maintain moist, however not moist.
  5. After stratification, transfer the tray to a location with oblique mild and temperatures which can be at the least 60 levels.
  6. Preserve moist till sprouts seem.
  7. Transplant exterior when all hazard of frost has handed.

Find out how to Develop

These lilies generally is a little persnickety of their first few seasons, however they’re simple to develop as soon as established. Get to know their primary preferences and upkeep necessities, and also you’ll take pleasure in a tall patch of cheerful, nodding ‘Turk’s cap’ lilies very quickly. 


Orange Turk's cap lilies, their elongated petals adorned with brown spots, bask in sunlight against lush, blurred greenery. The blooms stand out with their unique color and spotted patterns, creating a picturesque scene in nature's embrace.
This plant thrives in full solar, yielding sturdy stems, vibrant flowers, and wholesome foliage.

They may reside their largest, most colourful lives in areas with full solar, which suggests at the least six hours of direct mild every day. In these areas, stems can be sturdy and tall, flowers can be vibrant and plentiful, and foliage can be agency and inexperienced.

They will, nonetheless, reside in partial shade, which suggests 4-6 hours of direct mild per day. Their measurement and flower totals could also be smaller, however they normally just do effective in barely lower than full solar circumstances. 


A close-up of a Turk's cap lily showcasing yellow-to-pink petals adorned with dew drops. The delicate flower stands against a softly blurred backdrop of lush greenery, highlighting its vivid colors and the glistening morning dew.
The flowers favor constant moisture however dislike standing water.

Present common moisture, however don’t depart them in standing water. Whereas these are the pure circumstances in a creekside or water’s edge location, they are often troublesome to simulate in a yard.

Water on the soil stage with a soaker hose or a gradual nozzle setting. Purpose for an inch of water per week, utilizing a moisture sensor or finger poke to find out if supplemental irrigation is required.  

Yellow, drooping leaves point out that your lilies could also be getting an excessive amount of water, whereas brown, curling leaves point out that they could want extra. Regulate as wanted, and don’t flood or puddle the world round their stems, as it will trigger well being issues. 


Two gardening tools, a fork, and a trowel with wooden handles, lay atop dark, fertile loamy soil. The trowel is filled with rich soil, ready for planting or transferring plants.
The best soil for ‘Turk’s cap’ lilies needs to be unfastened, fertile, and barely acidic.

When you’re unsure, a soil check can let you know if the circumstances are perfect for planting. Soil needs to be unfastened, fertile, and loamy for finest outcomes. PH ranges needs to be barely acidic and someplace within the neighborhood of 6.0. Soil ought to drain properly and be wealthy in natural materials.


A delicate white-gloved hand carefully cradles fine granules of fish blood and bone meal fertilizer. In the blurred background, a lush ground teems with diverse plants, ready to receive the nourishing benefits of the organic fertilizer.
Apply a balanced or barely phosphorus-rich fertilizer in early spring to assist sturdy flower manufacturing.

Use a balanced fertilizer with a fair ratio of nitrogen to phosphorus to potassium (an NPK ratio of 10-10-10) or a fertilizer with a barely larger phosphorous content material (10-15-10), which can increase flower manufacturing.

Following the producer’s instructions, apply a slow-release, granular, or liquid product in early spring as quickly as inexperienced shoots are current. Water instantly and maintain the soil moist till the flowers start to open.

Natural fertilizer choices like fish meal or bone meal might be utilized in early spring. Comply with product instructions for software. Sometimes, a ratio of 5 kilos per 100 sq. toes is really useful. 


Though superbum is taken into account a comparatively low-maintenance lily species, your crops will profit from routine upkeep. Carry out the next backyard chores in your lilies frequently, and also you’ll be rewarded with huge, stunning crops that return 12 months after 12 months.  


A gardener in a gray sweatshirt and pants, kneeling on the mulched ground, gathers hardwood chips with white-gloved hands. The earthy chips contrast against the dark soil, highlighting the gardener's careful work amidst the textured backdrop of the garden bed.
Mulch with two to 3 inches of hardwood chips.

These lilies prefer to have their toes within the shade and their heads within the solar. The easiest way to make this occur is by mulching your beds. A two-to-three-inch layer of hardwood chips, pine straw, compost, hay, or mulched leaves will assist insulate the soil, suppress weeds, and maintain moisture from evaporating too shortly. 


Pink lilies bloom amidst lush greenery, their slender leaves adding grace. Sturdy sticks gently support the thriving lily plant. A diverse array of other flowers and plants creates a vibrant backdrop.
Lilies rising in much less daylight might profit from light assist utilizing a cane and ties.

Lilies in full solar can have sturdy stems and a sturdy, upright behavior. Except they’re planted in a location the place they could be weak to excessive winds, ‘Turk’s cap’ lilies shouldn’t want staking. Nonetheless, crops positioned in partial or dappled shade might need stems which can be rather less agency and should profit from a little bit construction.

To maintain your lily upright in less-than-ideal areas, insert a straight cane a number of inches from its central stem and tie it loosely with twine or elastic. Monitor frequently for indicators of scraping or stress and regulate ties with new progress. 


Hands wielding red pruning shears trim a lily stem within a garden bursting with vibrant foliage and coneflowers. The careful snip ensures the plant's health amidst the thriving greenery under the sunlight's golden touch.
Trim the spent flowers simply above wholesome leaves for extended blooming.

To encourage the fullest and longest bloom cycle, deadhead as quickly because the flowers start to droop and fade. When you carry out this upkeep job earlier than the flowers go to seed, crops can be tricked into considering the reproductive course of has not been accomplished, and they’ll type extra stunning blooms.

To deadhead, use a clear, sharp hand pruner to snip off spent flowers at a degree simply above a wholesome set of leaves. Repeat as needed all through the bloom cycle, and flowers will maintain coming for a number of weeks. 

Reduce Again

A close-up of delicate yellow lilies gracefully drooping, showcasing vivid petals against  green leaves. The blossoms hang elegantly, their sunny hue contrasting beautifully with the verdant foliage, capturing a serene moment in nature.
The lilies are finest when reduce to 3 inches above soil stage after the primary frost.

On the finish of the rising season, search for brown or yellow leaves and drooping stems to point that crops are able to be reduce for winter.

This may happen simply after your area’s first frost or when your perennials are about to enter dormancy. Utilizing a clear, sharp pruner or backyard sheers, reduce crops all the way down to about three inches above soil stage and take away plant particles from the backyard.


There are fairly a number of methods to propagate. Members of the Lilium genus reproduce quickly underground by means of bulblets, and inside a number of years of planting, you’ll discover three or 4 crops the place there as soon as was one. 

Above floor, additionally they produce bulbils alongside the crops’ stems and seed pods after flowering concludes. All of those pure offshoots can be utilized to increase your bounty. Right here’s a have a look at the method for every.


Two white lily bulbs with soil residue placed on a wooden floor. Nearby sits a green watering can filled with purple bulbils, a trowel, and trimmed lily stems. The bulbs appear ready for planting amid gardening tools and remnants.
Divide these lilies each few years to forestall overcrowding and preserve wholesome flower manufacturing.

By far, the best approach to propagate lilies is division. Plan to carry out this job each three or 4 years or once they begin exhibiting indicators of crowding (diminished flower manufacturing and/or a useless spot within the plant’s heart).

Listed here are the steps:

  1. Start in fall or spring, when crops haven’t any foliage or flowers.
  2. Dig up the whole plant utilizing a cautious pitchfork or shovel.
  3. Lay the basis ball sideways on a tarp or exhausting floor.
  4. Search for bulblets across the perimeter of the mom bulb. They are going to be longer and thinner than the unique.
  5. Utilizing your fingers or a pointy knife, slice or twist off as many new bulblets as you may with out compromising the central bulb.
  6. Search for root hairs to point the underside of the bulblet and a degree or perhaps even stem tissue to point the highest.
  7. Plant as you’d a brand new ‘Turk’s cap’ bulb (see Planting above)


In the foreground, a hand gently cradles dark lily bulbils, promising future blooms. Behind, orange lilies create a beautiful, blurred backdrop, hinting at the potential burst of color to come in the garden.
After flowering, harvest bulbils from ‘Turk’s cap’ lilies once they flip black or brown.

Lilies additionally produce ‘bulbils’ that might be harvested to create extra crops. After flowering is full and seed pods have fashioned, search for small, black ‘mini bulbs’ on the leaf axils. That is the purpose the place the leaves hook up with the principle plant stems. Bulbils will flip black or brown when they’re able to be plucked.

Listed here are the steps for planting them:

  1. Use your finger to select or twist off bulbils.
  2. Fill a well-draining container with potting soil or seed beginning medium.
  3. Look at bulbils for an upside, which can be pointy or have a small sprout.
  4. Poke bulbils into the soil together with your fingers or dig a trough that’s roughly two inches deep.
  5. Cowl bulbils calmly with soil and maintain them moist till they’ve entered dormancy.
  6. Insulate containers with mulch and search for shoots subsequent spring.
  7. Separate and transplant your bulbils to the backyard when the bottom is workable.


Sun-drenched lily plants bear elongated seed pods hanging gracefully from their stems. In the background, additional lily plants with similar seed pods adorn the scene, adding to the natural allure of the setting.
After flowering, dry and stratify the lily pods for planting.

After your crops have completed flowering, they may produce seed pods to provoke replica. Seed pods can be inexperienced and rectangular with a multi-sectioned physique (like a pumpkin). Many pods will rupture and unfold seed to the encompassing space if left in place. Relying on the place you reside, these seeds might self-sow, however their viability can be restricted.

You’ll must coax them alongside a bit to extend the chance of reproducing from seed. When seed pods are ripe, they may crack open barely. That is your indication that they’re able to be harvested. Take away and separate the seeds, leaving them dry for a number of days in a cool, darkish, well-aerated location. Then, cold-stratify and plant!


Whereas Lilium superbum is the one true ‘Turk’s cap’ lily, a number of Martagon hybrids mix this species with different varieties to create fascinating cultivars.

When you like the scale, type, and persona of the unique orange ‘Turk’s cap’ lily however would like a broader vary of coloration and scent choices, listed here are some cultivar kin to think about

Black Magnificence

Lilium ‘Black Magnificence’

Black Beauty Turk's Cap Lilies thrive in lush green foliage, their fuchsia pink petals elegantly contrasting with long stamens. The sunlit scene highlights the intricate details of these captivating flowers, adding a touch of enchantment to the garden landscape.
This species produces fuchsia petals outlined in white, crimson midribs, and golden yellow throats.

Barely shorter than conventional ‘Turk’s cap’ crops, ‘Black Magnificence’ maxes out between 3 and 5 toes. Blooms have the normal Martagon lily flower, recurved petals, and a down-drooping, pendant-style behavior.

The petals are predominantly fuchsia and rimmed with white. Midribs are crimson with monochrome freckling, and throats are a deep, golden yellow. 

Woman Alice

Lilium ‘Woman Alice’

Lady Alice Turk's Cap Lilies, basking in sunlight, display petals shifting from yellow to white, complemented by long stamens. The vibrant blooms stand amidst a blurred backdrop of lush greenery.
Standing at 3-5 toes tall, ‘Woman Alice’ boasts massive seven-inch-wide white flowers.

The flowers might be as much as seven inches large on this Martagon-Trumpet hybrid, which reaches heights of as much as 5 toes. Petals are snow white with orange-yellow facilities and raised maroon freckles.

‘Woman Alice’ produces round 20 flowers per plant and has barely extra substantial leaves than your typical lily. The stamens are vibrant inexperienced and extra-long with rust-colored anthers. 

Claude Shride

Lilium ‘Claude Shride’

A close-up of Claude Shride Turk's Cap Lilies displaying a rich, deep burgundy hue. The vivid petals contrast against a blurred backdrop of lush greenery, highlighting their striking coloration and delicate textures.
This selection boasts 3-4 toes tall stems bearing deep burgundy Turk’s cap flowers.

Averaging between three and 4 toes tall, ‘Claude Shride’ affords basic ‘Turk’s cap’ flowers in a wealthy shade of burgundy. The petals and freckles are rimmed with vibrant orange and recurved in basic Martagon lily vogue.

Flowers grasp down from sturdy stems with whorled, waxy inexperienced foliage. The stamens are burgundy purple with vibrant orange anthers.

Widespread Issues

Correctly planted ‘Turk’s cap’ lilies are extremely proof against illnesses and pests. Give them full solar, beneficiant spacing, well-drained roots, and common upkeep; they’re usually fairly resilient. There are some things to be careful for, nonetheless. Right here’s a fast look: 


A red Lily Leaf Beetle with distinctive black legs, head, and antennae rests on a lush green lily leaf. The beetle's glossy appearance and contrasting colors make it easily noticeable against the verdant backdrop of the foliage.
Handle lily pests by means of strategies like hand-picking and stem shaking.

The bugs most definitely to plague your lilies are aphids and lily leaf beetles. Aphids are normally the scale of a pinhead with clear or white our bodies and brown splotches on their bellies. When you see darkish, streaky stains and tiny bugs in your lily leaves, you in all probability have an aphid drawback. 

Lily leaf beetles are lengthy and bigger, at roughly a quarter-inch. They’re orange-red with black heads, legs, and antennae. Search for them on the undersides of leaves and petals. They may depart irregular chew marks.

You may mitigate each aphid and lily leaf beetle issues by stem shaking, hand selecting, and/or a tough blast from the hose. In case you are involved about both of those bugs, go to the backyard day by day and use certainly one of these strategies to maintain them at bay. You too can apply Neem oil as a deterrent. 


A close-up reveals brown leaves affected by disease, their once vibrant green hue now faded. The sunlight bathes them, accentuating the effects of the ailment. This unfortunate condition is evident in the distressed state of the foliage.
Botrytis and root rot manifest as tan or reddish leaf spots.

Botrytis and root rot are the illnesses most definitely to have an effect on ‘Turk’s cap’ lilies. These fungal circumstances normally come up in periods of extraordinarily excessive humidity or in overly moist soil. 

Botrytis presents with tan or reddish leaf spots ringed with purple or grey. Because the illness progresses, the whole leaf may turn into delicate and grey. When you suspect a botrytis an infection, prune off affected leaves promptly and monitor fastidiously. If greater than half of the plant is affected, dig up and destroy your plant to forestall additional unfold.

Root rot will first be noticeable at your lily’s base, the place stems flip grey or black and are sometimes slimy. Within the later phases of the illness, leaves and flowers may also be grey and weak.

This illness happens when the soil doesn’t drain adequately, and bulbs have turn into saturated with water.

To verify a root rot analysis, dig your ‘Turk’s cap’ up and look at its root mass. If bulbs are mealy or squishy and roots are black and slippery, toss the whole plant and a few of its surrounding soil within the rubbish. Root rot is a deadly situation for lilies, and prevention is at all times your finest weapon towards it. 

Often Requested Questions

Sure! ‘Turk’s cap’ bulbs could also be cooked and eaten. They’re stated to be just like a turnip in taste. Nonetheless, verify together with your nutritionist earlier than consuming to make sure you don’t have sensitivities to this Lilium species.

Sure! Flowers, stems, and leaves are poisonous to cats and might trigger extreme sickness or demise.

It has traditionally been used for diuretic and anti inflammatory qualities. Nonetheless, most Lilium species usually are not utilized in modern drugs. All the time verify together with your doctor earlier than utilizing an natural remedy.

Last Ideas

‘Turk’s cap’ lilies have a big, sunny presence within the panorama and resemble a unfastened shrub at maturity. They’re extremely enticing to hummingbirds, caterpillars, and butterflies, which take pleasure in their outstanding stamen and plentiful pollen. Plant them in full solar for a spectacular flower show, and maintain their roots moist however not soaked. The species is especially at dwelling close to the sting of a pond or creek. 

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