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Lycoris aurea 'La Jolla'

Lycoris aurea 'La Jolla'

La Jolla Golden Surprise Lily

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Item #: 13007

Zones: 8b to 9b, at least

Dormancy: Summer

Height: 25" tall

Culture: Sun to Light Shade

Origin: China

Pot Size: 3.5" pot (24 fl. oz/0.7 L) ?


Note: This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.

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There hasn't been much mention of the famous La Jolla (pronounced La Hoya), surprise lilies since the 1960s, when they were the subject of legendary plant lust and equally lusty hoarding. Lycoris 'La Jolla' is a hybrid strain created by the late Dr. Hamilton Traub, who crossed Lycoris africana with Lycoris aurea, and proclaimed the result to be the most beautiful lycoris ever created. Lycoris africana, also known as St. Augustine Lily, turned out to be a more tender form of the widespread Asian Lycoris aurea, so Traub's cross simply combined two nice forms of the same species, which flowered a month apart...great for gardeners from Zone 8b south...or those with a greenhouse. The 25" tall scapes arise in early October, each topped with heads of 6-7 flowers, composed of frilly, intense orange-golden petals. Almost immediately after flowering, the wide green foliage emerges and persists all winter, producing energy for the following year's flowers. Several decades ago, California lycoris breeder Phil Adams created his own version of these legendary hybrids using the same parents. These have never been shared until now, and we only have a limited quantity to offer. We've actually had these overwinter in the garden at 9 degrees F, but the only flowers we see are in our containerized plants.