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June 2010
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Blackberry Lily, Belamcanda chinensis : characteristics, planting conditions and care that should be taken.

Blackberry Lily, Belamcanda chinensis, has a deceptive name. It is actually not a lily but a member of the iris family. This uncommon perennial is grown for its unusual black berries that form in clusters when its seedpods split open in fall. They are fascinating to behold in the garden and often brought indoors for arrangements.
In summer, this easy-care iris relative bears small orange or yellow flowers dotted with red. Plants are short-lived, but self-sow to replace themselves.
The Blackberry lily (Belamcanda chinensis) is truly a lovely plant, featuring bright yellow to orange blossoms with dark spots. Consequently it is also known as the leopard lily. While the plant appears to be a full fledged member of the lily family, it has been determined that B. chinensis is actually an iris.

– The foliage is sword-like, similar to an iris, and matures to 3′ tall. In the heat of the summer, this perennial has deep orange tropical flowers with red spots.
– Though the individual flowers are small, each stem produces many flowers.
– The blackberry lily has broad fan-shaped leaves.
– The name Blackberry Lily is actually in recognition of the cluster of black seeds.
– The seedpods can be left in the garden for more plants or cut and used in floral arrangements.
– In addition to propagating plants by seed, mature clumps of
– Blackberry Lily can be divided and shared with others or replanted in the garden.
– Plant rhizomes 1 inch deep in well drained soil. Blackberry lilies will grow in full sun to partial shade.
– Allow the soil to dry out between waterings and fertilize once a month during the growing season.


Light: Sun, Part Sun.
Zones: 5-10.
Plant Type: Perennial.
Bulb Plant Height:24-40 inches tall.
Plant Width:15-20 inches wide.
Landscape Uses: Containers, Beds & Borders.
Special Features: Flowers, Fall Color, Winter Interest, Cut Flowers, Dried Flowers, Drought Tolerant, Easy to Grow.

Best Planted With Companion Plants

Until it begins to bloom, the Blackberry lily is not an overly interesting or attractive plant so is seldom grown alone but with any number of companion plants. The lily and its companions can make a very attractive container planting or a perennial border. When it blooms, the blossoms are short-lived, lasting only a day.

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