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Is there a fire burning in my garden?  No, but there’s one in my heart — and it’s name is lily.

Which is also the correct answer to the last week’s photo quiz. Thank you, all, who participated! And now prepare to see a lot of red because there are many more photos where that one came from. Those of you who guessed “watermelon,” “strawberry” and “leopard” were very close. A a matter of fact, this rare variety is called Oriental watermelon-strawberry-leopard lily.

It was sold to me as a “Gran Paradiso Asiatic Lily” but, obviously, I know better.

Although it’s not a Tiger lily, inside it lives a Tiger Spider.  Who probably would also be sold under a different name. Fortunately, it came free of charge, and I shall continue calling it by its stripes.

I’m enamored with lilies. There’s something majestic about every new flower that opens.

The spider with its stripes and I with my camera weren’t the only ones who couldn’t get enough of it. There was also this metallic green bee, obliviously working a stamen, paying no attention whatsoever to the paparazzi activity.

The metallic green bees, I learned, also have a proper name — Agapostemon. Had I known it at the moment, I probably would have been even more fascinated by the perfect color complementarity of Agapostemon’s emerald to Gran Paradiso’s vermilion!

A few mornings later, another one opened its petals — the bright magenta Toronto Asiatic Lily.

What is the number of lilies that I own? Not nearly as great as the number of tomato plants…  I believe I have six different kinds.  In addition to Gran Paradiso and Toronto, there are also:

Dizzy Oriental Lily – Bi-Colored Brilliance
Starfighter Oriental Lily
Stargazer Oriental Lily

And finally, the Lily Of Nepal — or Lilium Nepalense — that opened on Sunday morning just before I went back to the city.

Please don’t tell the others, but I think this one is my favorite. (Especially since it never got a chance to bloom last year, having fallen pray to an insolent deer.)

Well, now you discovered another one of my obsessions.  And if this knowledge, for some reason, doesn’t seem like a sufficient reward for correctly answering the quiz question, please let me know which of these beautiful ladies you would like to claim as your prize.  Available formats: print or bulb.


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