Skip to Content

Uncommon Orange Lilies: 21 to Fall in Love With

This article may contain affiliate links. We get paid a small commission from your purchases. More Affiliate Policy

While the types of lilies are limited, the variations within the types seem endless. Every time you look at a new catalog, there’s more.

Lilies are divided into eight hybrid divisions, cultivations, hybridizations, and cross hybrids of what is known as the species division, the wild lilies. Each broad hybrid category contains species, all in the genus Lilium. These categories are classified according to various shared traits.

Table of Contents

Types of Lilies

Every gardener I’ve ever met has a soft spot for lilies. There is a timeless beauty to these large, brilliant, and consistent blooms. You can have flowers throughout the summer if you grow enough different lily cultivars.

Keep in mind that daylilies (genus Hemerocallis) are not “genuine” lilies (genus Lilium). Lilies are grouped into nine horticultural classifications, or divisions, with Division IX representing wild lilies or parent plants. 

Below is a list of the divisions and the species common to each. Some of the divisions don’t have orange lilies.

Division I – Asiatic Lily Hybrids

 L. amabile, L. bulbiferum, L. cernuum, L. concolor, L. davidii,  L. x hollandicum, L. x macultum, L. maximowiczii, and L. pumilum

Division II – Martagon Lily Hybrids

 L. martagon, L. hansonii, L. medeoloides, and L. tsingtauense.

Division III – Cadidum Lily Hybrids

 L. candidum, L. chalcedonicum, L. monadelphum, excluding L. Martagon.

Division IV – American Lily Hybrids

 L. columbianum, L. pardalinum, L. canadense, L. superbum, L. philadelphicum, L. michiganense, L. grayi, L. michauxii, L. catesbaei and L. iridollae.

Division V – Longiflorum Lily Hybrids

 L. longiflorum and L. formosanum.

Division VI – Trumpet and Aurelian Lily Hybrids

L. luecanthum, L. regale, L. sargentiae, L. sulphureum, and L. henryi.

Division VII – Oriental Lily Hybrids

 L. auratum, L. speciosum, L. nobilissimum, L. rubellum, L. alexandrae, and L. japonicum.

Division VIII – Interdivisional Hybrids

I have included one sample below.

Division IX – Species (Wild Lilies)

Several examples of naturally growing orange lilies are listed below.

21 Orange Lilies for You to Grow

Despite their delicate appearance, lilies are surprisingly resilient and easy-to-grow plants. They thrive in full sun, partial shade, dappled shade, and even light shade and are not picky about soil type or acidity.

When compared to other bulbs, stored lilies tend to dehydrate faster, mainly because they lack the protective papery coating (“tunic”) that affords others some protection. It is better to plant lilies soon after getting them, either in the fall or spring.

Lilies, perhaps more so than other bulbs, need well-drained soil to ensure their root system remains healthy. To prepare the soil for your lilies, dig down at least 12 inches, take out any large rocks, and mix in some organic matter like compost or leaf mold.

Regular soil tests, at least every three years, are good practice and allow you to adjust soil pH and nutrition levels. Strangely enough, lilies endure most soil types, but good drainage is a prerequisite. Adding inert materials such as pumice, perlite, expanded shale, or chick grit (NOT sand) helps create well-drained soils.

Plant lilies, like other bulbs, with some bone meal in the flower beds, but otherwise require nothing in the way of fertilizer when first planted. Instead, wait until the bulbs produce green leaves before applying a complete organic fertilizer.

Use compost, well-rotted manure, or a longer-lasting mulch like bark mulch, wood chips, or cocoa shells to spread on your flower beds around your lilies to help keep the soil moist and cool. I recommend covering the bed with straw and/or green cover crops to prevent the bulbs from being damaged by the freeze-thaw cycle.

Remove faded blossoms during the growing season, but don’t prune the plant more than a third of the way down, or you can hurt its vitality and lifespan. Lilies are not drought tolerant, so you should keep your garden watered. 

Below is a list of 21 orange lilies for you to try.

1. Michigan Lily (Lilium michiganense)

Lily Division:   IV – American HybridsHardiness Zones:4 to 8
Flower Time:JulyLight Requirement: Sun, Part Shade
Preference:Moist, well-drained soilMature Height:2 to 5 feet tall

The Michigan lily is native to Missouri and flourishes in northern and central North America. This graceful species with slender stems offering ecliptic clad with lance-shaped orange leaves arranged in whorls. In early to mid-summer, it offers orange-red flowers.

2. Oregon Lily (Lilium columbianum)

Lily Division:   IX – Species (Wild Lilies)Hardiness Zones:5 to 9
Flower Time:June, July, and AugustLight Requirement: Sun to Part Shade
Preference:Medium waterMature Height:2 to 4 feet tall

Prized for its long flowering period, Lilium columbianum (Columbia Lily) is an erect bulbous orange lily with an unbranched single stem bearing whorls of lance-shaped leaves, 2 to 4 inches (5-10 cm) long. The Oregon lily is a delightful addition to any garden. 

3. Fire Lily (Lilium bulbiferum var. croceum)

Lily Division:   IX – Species (Wild Lilies)Hardiness Zones:4 to 8
Flower Time:JulyLight Requirement: Full Sun
Preference:Medium waterMature Height:2 to 3 feet tall

This is an exquisite orange lily species with extravagant, wide-open, brilliant orange flowers that deepen to red toward the tips of the petals. Blooms can be two to three inches wide (50 to 75 mm).

Interesting Facts About Fire Lilies

According to Kew Gardens Plant Index, the fire lily (Cyrtanthus ventricosus) is a bulbous plant native to South Africa, where, like a phoenix, it grows and flowers after a fire. Another fire lily, also native to southern Africa, is the Gloriosa superba, commonly called the flame lily. Neither plant are true lilies.

4. Turk’s Cap Lily (Lilium superbum)

Lily Division:   IX Species (Wild Lilies)Hardiness Zones:5 to 8
Flower Time:June, JulyLight Requirement: Sun to Dappled Shade
Preference:Tolerates shade wellMature Height:6 feet tall

Turk’s-cap lily is a perennial wildflower plant that enjoys partial shade, and deep, fertile, moist soil. Its natural habitat is near ravines, cove forests, swamps, and coastal bogs. The Turk’s cap orange lily flower has orange-red petals thickly sotted with purple freckles.

Vigorous, Lilium superbum is a profuse bloomer of delightful beauty, offering vibrant orange lilies. The tangerine pendular flowers can be up to four inches wide (10 cm) and have reflexed petals giving them the look of a Turk’s cap. This is one of my favorite orange lilies and a constant feature in my garden.

5. Trumpet Lily (Lilium ‘African Queen’)

Lily Division:   IX Species (Wild Lilies)Hardiness Zones:4 to 8
Flower Time:July, AugustLight Requirement: Sun to Part Shade
Preference:Medium waterMature Height:4 to 6 feet tall

The African queen lily is a multiple-award-winning trumpet lilies with enormous (6 to 8 inches (15-20 cm) long). These orange petals face slightly downward and are marked with garnet-brown freckles that give off a delightful fragrance.

African queen lilies develop clusters of 15 to 20 flowers per stalk, blooming mid to late summer. Plant the African queen beside your patio and take in the heady scent offered by these orange lilies on warm summer evenings.

Trumpet orange lilies make wonderful border plants, adding spectacular color and contrast to other summer flowering bulbs. It’s perfect for growing in pots and produces bright yellow-orange flowers for cutting.

This magnificent Lily is a proven performer and a breeze to cultivate, earning it the renowned Award of Garden Merit from the Royal Horticultural Society (2002).

6. Fire King Lily (Lilium ‘Fire King’)

Lily Division:   I – Asiatic LiliesHardiness Zones:4 to 8
Flower Time:Early springLight Requirement: Full Sun to Part Shade
Bloom Size:2 to 3 inchesMature Height:3 to 4 feet tall

Lilium ‘Fire King’ is an exquisite Asiatic lily with showy, pendular flowers featuring rich burnt orange petals adorned with dark spots, perfect for early summer borders. Want some pazazz in your garden? 

The vibrant leopard lily will brighten any space with dramatic emphasis. With their bell-shaped flower, Leopard lilies are a great companion to hosta plants, adding interesting contrast. Plant leopard lilies in spring or fall to attract pollinators.

7. Lilium Lily Looks™ Tiny Double You

Lily Division:   I – Asiatic HybridsHardiness Zones:4 to 8
Flower Time:JulyLight Requirement: Full Sun to Part Shade
Patent:PP22875Mature Height:Compact

Lily Look™ are specifically cultivated orange lilies for pot plants with limited height while still offering exquisite orange blooms with fleshy petals. When the blooming season has passed (fall), you can take it out of the pot and plant the lily bulbs directly into the ground in your garden.

The top of the lily bulbs should be buried roughly an inch deep (2 to 3cm). After planting, make sure the soil is still damp. The plant will wither in the winter and return in full bloom the following summer.

Pot lilies are adaptable enough to be used as annuals or perennials in the ground or as patio pots. They are simple to cultivate and if conditions are favorable, will provide continuous orange lilies for weeks.

8. Double Tiger Lily (Lilium lancifolium ‘Flore Pleno’)

Lily Division:   I – Asiatic HybridsHardiness Zones:4 to 9
Flower Time:AugustLight Requirement: Full Sunlight to Part Shade
Preference:Medium waterMature Height:4 to 6 feet tall

Tiger Lily is an Asian lily with bright orange flowers with dark spots giving it the appearance of tiger’s fur and was previously known as Lilium tigrinum. Bright and beautiful, this orange lily with its double blossoms is native to China and Japan.

The mature bulbs will multiply to create clumps, and the plants are incredibly ornamental, with each stem bearing up to 25 flowers. Tiger lilies blend well with other summer-blooming bulbs, making them excellent companions to vibrant-colored Hosta. Double Tiger Lilies are my favorite orange lily plants.

9. Leopard Lily (Lilium catesbaei)

Lily Division:   IX – Species (Wild Lilies)Hardiness Zones:7 to 10
Flower Time:July, AugustLight Requirement: Full Sunlight to Part Shade
Bloom Size:3 to 6 inchesMature Height:2 to 3 feet tall

The orange flowers of the leopard lily, a perennial orange wildflower, are a sight to behold. In late July, tall stems covered in bright orange petals emerge. 

The leopard lily bulbs can lie dormant in the wild for up to five years, waiting for the right conditions that will cause them to rise like phoenixes from the ashes. The leopard lily flower emerges after a bush fire, a sign of life after the devastation.

10. Orange Ton Lily (Lilium Asiatic)

Lily Division:   I – Asiatic HybridsHardiness Zones:3 to 8
Flower Time:Orange ton bloom in July to AugustLight Requirement: Full Sunlight or Part Shade
Preference:Orange ton prefers medium irrigationMature Height:3 to 4 feet tall

One of the most eye-catching orange lily varieties, orange ton produces many 8-inch (20 cm) trumpet lilies that raise their heads to show off their orange beauty to gardeners and guests.

The large, vibrant flowers of the orange ton create stunning indoor arrangements, adding color and texture. Plant orange-ton lilies in clusters for striking borders and beds or landscapes with fire and flame themes.

Orange Ton Lilies make a statement in your early summer garden with their bright solid orange blooms. Orange ton lilies do best when planted in full sun to partial shade.  

11. Enchantment Lily (Lilium ‘Enchantment’)

Lily Division:   I – Asiatic HybridsHardiness Zones:2 to 8
Flower Time:Mid-SummerLight Requirement: Full Sun
Hybrids:Parent of 9 childrenMature Height:2 to 3 feet tall

The enormous (6 – 8 inches (15 20 cm)), frequently odorless blossoms of this Asiatic hybrid orange lily come in a rainbow of hues and bloom in the early summer. The Enchantment stems are straight, 3 to 4 feet (90 – 120 cm) tall, and its orange flowers are vivid orange-red with strong dark markings. 

Each season, Asiatic lilies are generally among the first lilies to bloom and make fantastic fresh-cut flowers.

12. Coral Lily (Lilium pumilum)

Lily Division:   I – Asiatic HybridsHardiness Zones:3 to 8
Flower Time:JuneLight Requirement: Partial Sun
Preference:Can manage heavier soilMature Height:20 to 25 inches tall

The coral lily offers clusters of 2-inch (5 cm) broad, brilliant glossy crimson pendular blooms with sharply recurved tepals showing occasional black dots. This is a particularly lovely miniature Turk’s Cap Lily.

The fragile flowers have a mildly sweet scent, and there can be as many as twenty to thirty on a single stalk. It’s a vigorous colonizer perfect for a backyard rock garden.

13. Peruvian Lily (Lilium ‘Bali Hai’)

Lily Division:   I – Asiatic HybridsHardiness Zones:4 to 8
Flower Time:Throughout SummerLight Requirement: Partial Sun
Bloom:Lighter contrast peach and mangoMature Height:4 feet tall

The Peruvian lily is a wonderful addition to a perennial border and blends well with annuals and other summer-blooming bulbs. Because of its high-quality fresh-cut blooms, it is ideally suited for growing in pots, small gardens, and the cutting garden.

14. L.A. Hybrid Lily (Lilium ‘Desert Song’)

Lily Division:   VIII – Other HybridsHardiness Zones:3 to 8
Flower Time:Throughout SummerLight Requirement: Sunny location
Plant Info:Rare plantMature Height:2 to 3 feet tall

The Lilium longiflorum x Lilium Asiatic cross, introduced in 1992, offers a cross between trumpet-shaped blooms and the warm colors, upright-facing blooms of Asiatic lilies, a deft combination for exceptional flowers for floral designs.

15. Gray’s Lily (Lilium grayi)

Lily Division:   IX – Species (Wild Lilies)Hardiness Zones:4 to 8
Blooming Period:Mid-SummerLight Requirement: Full Sun
Preference:EndangeredMature Height:2 to 5 feet tall

The federal government has recognized Lilium grayi as a species of “Special Concern,” meaning it is in danger of extinction. Only in early summer can you find this perennial wildflower growing anywhere other than in damp meadows, bogs, and forests high in the mountains. The bell-shaped flower, which is reddish-orange and measures 2.5 inches (8 cm) in diameter, offers a cluster of blooms.

16. Humboldt’s Lily (Lilium humboldtii)

Lily Division:   IX – Species (Wild Lilies)Hardiness Zones:4 to 8
Blooming Period:SummerLight Requirement: Full Sun or Part Shade
Bloom Size:4 to 5 inchesMature Height:3 to 8 feet tall

The Humboldt lily is found only in California, growing at altitudes between 2,000 and 3,000 feet; it is endemic to the Sierra Nevada. It can reach a height of 8 feet and has enormous, bright flowers that are golden orange with dark crimson or maroon freckles. Flowers appear on the shrub in a pyramidal cluster around June.

17. Twilight Lily (Lilium tsingtauense)

Lily Division:   II – Martagon Lily HybridsHardiness Zones:4 to 9
Bloom Time:Mid- to Late-SummerLight Requirement: Full Sun or Part Shade
Preference:Medium waterMature Height:3 to 4 feet tall

The Twilight lily blooms in mid-to-late summer, and this hermaphrodite lily flower is pollinated by bees and prefers moist soil.

18. Alpine Lily (Lilium parvum)

Lily Division:   IX. Species (Wild Lilies)Hardiness Zones:4 to 8
Blooms:Mid-SummerLight Requirement: Full Sun
Preference:Medium waterMature Height:2 to 3 feet tall

Also known as the Sierra tiger lily or alpine lily, it’s native to the Sierra Nevada. The plant grows in hilly woodlands, sending up branches with bloom clusters of lily flowers during the summer months and is smaller and more bell-shaped than typical lily blooms.

19. Wood Lily (Lilium philadelphicum)

Lily Division:   IX – Species (Wild Lilies)Hardiness Zones:4 to 7
Blooms:Mid- to Late-SummerLight Requirement: Full Sun to Part Shade
Preference:Medium waterMature Height:1 to 3 feet tall

The Wood Lily is a perennial wildflower commonly found in North America. Its showy, brilliant red-orange blossoms can grow between one and three inches in diameter (2 to 7cm). It blooms for up to five weeks in the middle to late summer and is beautifully freckled.

20. Asiatic Lily (Lilium ‘Brunello’)

Lily Division:   I – Asiatic HybridsHardiness Zones:4 to 8
Blooms:Mid-SummerLight Requirement: Full Sun
Preference:Medium waterMature Height:2 to 3 feet tall

The Brunello offers a canopy of glossy mid-green foliage topped by a profusion of large, brilliant orange blooms with gently arching tips. It’s an awe-inspiring Asiatic lily with bowl-shaped flowers that face upward, displaying their dark scarlet stamen.

21. Coral Sunset Lily (Lilium ‘Coral Sunset’)

Lily Division:   I – Asiatic HybridsHardiness Zones:3 to 10
Blooms:Mid-SummerLight Requirement: Full Sun
Preference:Medium waterMature Height:2 to 4 feet tall

Reminiscent of a sunset, the coral sunset orange lily is a vigorous grower that offers mildly fragrant, caramel orange flowers that bloom in mid-summer.

In Closing

Most lilies are easy-to-grow plants that offer elegant vibrancy to your garden. Orange lilies contrast well against pale green foliage, allowing you to create interesting features. I hope this piece offers some inspiration.

Please provide me with your email if you want me to send you my monthly newsletter or special offers and event notifications.