Hansen's Northwest Native Plant Database

Lilium columbianum (Tiger Lily)



 Plantae Plants


 Tracheobionta Vascular plants


 Spermatophyta Seed plants


 Magnoliophyta Flowering plants


 Liliopsida Monocotyledons






 Liliaceae Lily family


 Lilium L. lily


 Lilium columbianum Leichtlin Columbia lily

Note: Throughout the years I've written short articles for our website's home pages (home pages are the front page of a website) about these plants. They are now included at the bottom of this page, and are illustrated by botanical drawings and paintings, some of which are from books published from 1500 - 1900.

This beautiful perennial native lily grows from 2-4 tall.

From the whorls of 6-9 lime green leaves, stretch the flowering stalks.

Each stalk is laden with clusters of 2, bell-like, orange flowers with red spots. They hang pendant, the petals curling backwards to the stem.

Very hard to find commercially, Tiger Lily is equally rare in the wild due to people harvesting them.

If you were blessed to see one, you would find them along the Pacific Coast and inland to Nevada and north to Idaho (USDA 5-10).

They frequent open woodlands, steep slopes, roadsides and favor rich, well-drained soil.

In the garden they do remarkably well, preferring their heads in the sun but their bases in the shade of other plants.

For a short comparison of northwest native lilies, click here.

This painting is by Mary Vaux Walcott, Smithsonian American Art Museum

From Homepage June 28, 2002

Northwest native perennial Tiger lilies (Lilium columbianum) are blooming now all through Oregon's Willamette Valley. Have you seen them in your area? We'd like to hear about them--please send an email (with pictures if you can) and tell us what kind of environment in which you find them or where you've planted some in your own yard. Seems like there are more this year and they are in more areas than last year.

These beautiful perennials will grow and multiply for many years to come. More dainty than the oriental lilies, the native Tigers are fascinating to observe. If you have some in your landscape, cut a bud and put in a vase of water. Soon the petals will separate and fan out, finally recurving completely back to the stem. This happens so quickly you can actually see it in progress. The entire ballet of the bud opening to full bloom takes approximately 1 hour.

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Contact:  star@chillirose.com ~ Copyright 2012 Wallace W. Hansen ~ All rights reserved