White Lily - A Guide to White Lilies

White Lily

White lilies are a dream come true. Their unique shape, their pure bloom color, are nothing but a marvelous creation that has helped numerous brides overcome their indecisiveness for picking their wedding flowers. White lilies are pure flowers symbolizing virginity, as in the Christian history the white lilies are a symbol of Virgin Mary herself.

White Lily Description

  • Family: Liliaceae
  • Origin: The origin of the white lily is not very exact. They have been traced in various parts of the world for over 3000 years, from the times of the nomads and gatherers. Nowadays, the white lily grows throughout Mediterranean regions and in western Asia. It is thought that the white lily is native to Persia and Syria. However, their botanical name has a Latin origin – Lilium – this in its turn it is derived from the Greek Leirion - which is considered to be associated with the Madonna lily and it can be translated by using the word “flower”.
  • Sun exposure: White lilies need full sun exposure for a proper growth.
  • Height: White lilies grow from 6 to 8 feet tall.
  • Soil: White lilies’ soil should be moist, well-drained, with mulch and lots of organic material in it.
  • Leaves: White lily leaves are long, pointy and linear. Their color is green.
  • Blooming time: White lilies bloom from early summer to early fall, basically from June to August.
  • Maintenance: White lilies should be planted about 12 inches deep in the ground, they should be watered at all times after planting and they should be fed fertilizers every spring.
  • Propagation method: White lilies may be propagated through bulb division, stem bulblets, stem bulbils, scales, by tissue culture and through seeds.

White Lily Species

There are about 80 lily species out there, and they can be categorized by color, bloom, scent and size. Therefore, we gave longiflorums, oriental, Asiatic and Asiatic longiflorum, from which white lilies are the following few: Lilium candidum (the Old White Lily), Lilium candidum flore pleno - The Double White Lily, Lilium candidum flore variegata - The Variegated White Lily, Lilium longiflorum - The Long-flowered White Lily, Lilium iriartagon - Turk's Cap Lily, Lilium candidum folia variegata - The Gold-striped Lily.

White Lily Meaning

White lilies symbolize purity, virginity, youth and majesty. It is generally known that the white lily has a history in the Roman mythology: the white lily was born as the queen of Gods was breastfeeding her son, Hercules, and some surplus milk fell down from the sky, creating the milky way and thus, the white lilies are the result of some of those stars falling on the earth.

White Lilies Arrangements

White lily arrangements are used both in weddings and in funerals. In weddings they are wonderful as centerpieces on the guests’ tables, they can be used as cake ornaments, as corsages and boutonnieres, as they are pure, white flowers that go exactly with what the wedding and the bride is all about – purity and innocence.

In funerals, white lily arrangements can be wrapped in flower baskets, as they express and transmit the most sincere sympathy sentiments.

White lilies arrangements may be used as church decorations for baptisms as well, as they are a symbol of purity and youth.

When mixing white lilies with other flowers, any other colors may be used, as white goes with everything, but as for the flower types, try to find matching flowers for a perfect harmony. Use flowers like freesia, iris, daisies, snapdragons for your white lily arrangements.

White Lily Bouquets

White lilies bouquets are beyond belief! They are the ultimate expression of purity. Especially when mixed with shades of lavender or pink, they are just breathtaking! White lily bouquets can be round, cascade, posey or hand-tied.

Mixed with blue freesia, yellow iris or white calla lilies, the white lily bouquet is faultless and any royal bride should have it!

White Lilies in Gardens

If you want your garden to be lovely in summer, plant your white lilies in the fall. You can plant them directly in your garden, in various flowerbeds, or you can create a one of a kind arrangement on your porch. White lilies look wonderful and quite expressive when planted in large groupings. However, remember that they like growing in a very well-drained soil and in a sunny place, that dries immediately after a rainfall.

White lilies may be grown alongside red roses, purple iris or yellow freesia, pink carnations, white daisies or snapdragons.


Keep cut white lilies away from any source of heat. Preferably, after receiving them, hold them in a dark place for about 20 minutes, this will do them good. Also, make sure they have plenty of water in the vase, as they are very thirsty plants and remove their pollen immediately. Keep white lilies away from your cats, as they can be quite poisonous flowers for them.

White lilies are majestic flowers! They are pure and chic, elegant and tasteful. You can use them every time you want to express your deep thoughtful feelings in celebrating birth, marriage or paying respects to a departed one.