Wednesday, July 29

Wednesday Farm Photos:
Surprise! There Are Naked Ladies in My Front Yard

Easy to Grow Surprise Lilies (Lycoris squamigera) Are Also Known as Naked Ladies

It's hard to imagine a more beautiful flower that requires so little care. Interested in having some of your own? You can read all about them (including some of their other nicknames) in Growing and Loving Surprise Lilies over on my kitchen garden blog.

Previously posted surprise lily photos:
8/4/05: Surprise Lilies Are Also Known as Naked Ladies
7/31/06: Surprise Lilies Attacked!
8/2/06: Surprise! Cary Didn't Eat All the Lilies

© Copyright 2009, the pretty in pink foodie farm blog where I have to admit that sometimes I daydream of having big swaths of blooming bulbs throughout the yard and garden (you know, like Martha Stewart's 10,000 daffodils all flowering at once), but over the years I've found that there is often nearly as much enjoyment to be had from just a couple of fiery flowers or a single clump of color—not to mention the almost zero amount of effort (and cost) required to care for them.


  1. Nice photo of the cat walking the fence! So glad to have found your site.

  2. Here in 'Bama my variety of surprise lilies (which are dark fuchsia) won't come in until next month...unless they surprise me. :o)

    Let me ask you: are you guys having any luck with tomatoes up there this year? I have a million green tomatoes that WILL NOT ripen. Everyone here is having the same problem.....Just curious. Thanks!

    PS - Down here we also call Surprise Lilies, "Spider Lilies."

  3. Mine are out and open, too! The first year they were in my yard, they were a total surprise (we inherited them from the last owner). I like em.

    Tomatoes, city girl? We had that problem in St. Louis last summer, or maybe the summer before. This year I don't even have the green ones for some reason. Nothing wants to grow.

  4. I have naked ladies on my front yard.. and even gave a bouquet to my mother-in-law. They are my saving grace. I tried to grow roses once but they all died. Sigh.

    As for tomatoes, mine have ripened perfectly, and I have more than I can eat on salads. Guess it's the Cali weather.

  5. Those are beautiful! I just love things that can take care of themselves.

  6. I've never heard them called that before. We have spider lilies that we call surpise lilies.

    Love the kitty feet.


  7. Gorgeous! and I love the cat feet walking on the fence photo!

  8. Great photos! I especially like the one with the cat on the fence.

    I have some Naked Ladies that I got from my Mom's garden at least 15 years ago. They will bloom a very light pink in mid-August here at 3000ft in the California foothills. They always remind me of my Mom when they bloom.

    I have few tomatoes this year, and they are all still green.

  9. Do you know the latin name for these lilies? They look so much like the Blackberry lily that I have but mine are orange. I love lilies.

  10. Hi Everybody!
    Thanks for taking the time to write. It's so fun hearing about your own surprise lilies.

    Hi City Girl,
    Dare I admit that my tomato plants went into the ground so late I only have one or two little green ones out there right now?

    From what I've heard, though, this has been a weird year for tomatoes in many places around the country. Just yesterday I was talking to a friend who works at Farm Aid (an awesome organization - and their big concert is going to be in St. Louis this year!) in Boston and she said the tomato blight is so bad there that her CSA is going to pull up four thousand tomato plants on Friday. How sad is that?

    I don't specifically recall ever having green tomatoes that won't ripen, but I'm guessing it has something to do with the weather. My Amish neighbor (who thankfully had some tomatoes for sale the other day - oh boy were they good) said that his first early planting was basically flooded with all the spring rain and gave him no tomatoes. Every year it seems like something new (and nasty) happens to at least some of my tomato plants - which is why I like to plant so many! : )

    Hi Patricia,
    The latin name for these is Lycoris squamigera. I love lilies, too!

  11. Love the cat feet. :) Pretty flowers, too!

  12. Hi - love your blog!

    Here in MD, I've always heard these referred to as Naked Ladies as well, but at the horse farm where I keep my horse we jokingly call them pink flamingos because my horse always spooks at them since they appear so suddenly (like a flock of birds)!


  13. So that's what they are called! Several years ago, I dug up some bulbs from my deceased grandmother's yard thinking they were daffodils. It was early spring, no blooms yet, and it was her daffodil bed.

    They didn't bloom the first year in my yard, but I wasn't concerned. Imagine my surprise the following year when I didn't get daffodils, but these weird looking pink flowers after I thought the plant had died! I'll always think of them as surprise lilies from now on.

  14. i love the little cat feet!

  15. Interesting and beautiful images, as always. Down here we have spider lilies, which are often a surprise, but which look distinctly different from your surprise lilies.

  16. After the surprise lillies have bloomed, do the stalks or whatever they are called need to remain as tulips do?

  17. Hi Anonymous,
    I usually just leave the stalks once the flowers have bloomed (mostly because I'm lazy) - though the dogs often knock them down for me. ;) Since you can use them as cut flowers, I don't think that cutting away the stems will do any harm to the plants.

  18. well hey there....haven't been here in way toooo long....hope you have been well...and I do blieve that your photography skills are wonderful!


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