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Lily "seeds"

Q. What are the small, round, black growths on my lilies?

A. Certain species of Lilium (including L. lancifolium, L. bulbiferum, L. sargentiae and L. davidii) produce shiny black bulbils in the leaf axils of the plant — right next to the main stem. These are specialized reproductive structures that are genetically identical to the plant. Frequently they fall off and take root on their own, or they may be harvested from the parent plant in early autumn and set in trays of loamy potting compost spaced about 1 inch apart and 1 inch deep. The trays should be left in a cold frame until the following fall, when the small plants can be transplanted into the garden.