Family: Liliaceae
Common Name: Dog's Tooth Violet, Trout Lily

Native to North America, Asia and Europe, these bulbous plants look very pretty growing in rockeries or woodland gardens. Each plant has two thin, basal, elliptical leaves, about 15 cm (6 in) long, and delicate, nodding flowers which may be solitary or several to a stem. They are spring bloomers, to 10-35 cm (4-14 in) in height.


E. americanum, trout lily, zone 3, has yellow flowers which are speckled with red, and mottled leaves.

E. dens-canis, dog's tooth violet, zone 3, grows to 20 cm (8 in) and is the most widely grown of the species. It has attrac­tive leaves, marbled in brown and green, and white, pink or lilac flowers. The common name refers to the small, tooth-shaped bulb. There are several outstanding cultivars of this species, including 'Pink Perfection', with clear pink flowers, 'Snowflake', with pure white flowers, and 'Purple King' which is burgundy-coloured.

E. grandiflorum, avalanche lily, has bright yellow flowers and grows best at a high alti­tude.

E. hendersonii has intensely marbled leaves and pale lilac flowers with dark purple markings.

E. orelonum has white to pink blooms, with yellow inside.


These bulbs will do very well under a tree in a soil rich in leaf mould, provided they are kept moist. Top-dress with compost or rotted manure yearly. They need partial or dap-pled shade. Plant corms in autumn where they are to grow, 8 cm (3 in) deep and 10 cm (4 in) apart. Propagate by careful division of the corm after flowering. Seeds are very slow to germi­nate.


Moist cool to cold. Zone 5 for most species.

Erythrina      Escallonia