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The Plant Guide

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Toad lily

Tricyrtis formosana

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Tricyrtis formosana 'Gilt Edge'

The upward-facing, star-like blossoms of this species vary from white to light pink or lilac, with reddish purple spots throughout. They are reminiscent of orchids. Toad lily blooms in early autumn along arching stems to 2 or 3 feet tall. Plants grow to 2 feet wide. They make subtle, but exotic specimens for woodland borders and shady house plantings. They will colonize over time, but are not invasive. These perennials are from moist woodlands and high elevations from eastern Asia to the Phillipines.

CareProvide rich, moist but well-drained soil in partial to full shade. Soil must not be allowed to dry out. Mulch plants in cold climates with little snow cover, and site late-blooming species like this one in a sheltered location to protect blossoms from early frosts.

PropagationSow seed when fresh in a cold frame. Divide when still dormant in early spring.

ProblemsSlugs, snails.

  • Genus : Tricyrtis
  • Plant Height : 1 to 3 feet
  • Plant Width : 1 to 3 feet
  • Zones : 6, 7, 8, 9
  • Bloom Time : Early Fall
  • Plant Seasonal Interest : Fall Interest
  • Growth Rate : Fast
  • Uses : Ground Covers, Shade
  • Maintenance : Low
  • Moisture : Medium to Wet
  • Light : Partial Shade to Full Shade
  • Plant Type : Perennials
  • Flower Color : Pink, Red, White
  • Characteristics : Showy Foliage
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