I was going to start this post by declaring that if I could only have one Lily, that would be the Oriental Lily ‘Casa Blanca’. But then I realized that I only have 4 kinds of Lilies altogether: there’s the Oriental-Trumpet hybrid ‘Conca d’Or’, a couple of Asiatic Lilies (variety unknown), and a few Martagon Lilies. The Martagons are enjoying their first season in our garden and have decided not to bloom this year.
So you may not be impressed by my declaration on the primacy of ‘Casa Blanca’. Even so, I will not offer any retractions.
There are 2 things that make ‘Casa Blanca’ stand out. The first is the fragrance, which perfumes the entire garden. (‘Conca d’Or’ is also fragrant, but more faintly than ‘Casa Blanca’.) The second is the ivory flowers that seem to glow in shade, shadow, or early evening.
We have 3 small clumps of ‘Casa Blanca’. The first is at the sidewalk end of the Driveway Border, where it can be fully appreciated by passersby. The second is among the ‘Raspberry Wine’ Bee Balm (Monarda didyma) in the Sidewalk Border. The third is in the Back Garden, where we can enjoy the fragrance while relaxing on the patio.
The ‘Casa Blanca’ planted among the Bee Balm are gradually being squeezed out. ‘Casa Blanca’ is not as tall as ‘Conca d’Or’, just about 5′, and does better with shorter companions.
‘Casa Blanca’ starts blooming just as ‘Conca d’Or’ starts to fade. Its bloom time seems an appropriate way to announce the arrival of the peak of summer in the garden.