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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Wood Lily - Lilium philadelphicum

Species of Concern
Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S3
(see State Rank Reason below)
State Threat Score: Low
CCVI: Less Vulnerable
C-value: 9

Agency Status


External Links

State Rank Reason (see State Rank above)
Lilium philadelphicum has a patchy, but wide distribution in Montana, and is often found in specialized habitats. Observations in eastern Montana have not been made since the 1930's and 1940's. This species is vulnerable to extirpation in Montana because of its attractiveness, potential to be over-collected, and habitat requirements. Native lilies have rarely survived in gardens. Current information on known locations, especially in the eastern counties, is greatly needed.
  • Details on Status Ranking and Review
    Wood Lily (Lilium philadelphicum) Conservation Status Review
    Review Date = 09/01/2017
    View State Conservation Rank Criteria
    Range Extent

    ScoreG - 200,000-2,500,000 sq km (~80,000-1,000,000 sq mi)

    Area of Occupancy

    ScoreE - 26-125 4-km2 grid cells

    Number of Populations

    ScoreC - 21 - 80

    Number of Occurrences or Percent Area with Good Viability / Ecological Integrity

    ScoreC - Few (4-12) occurrences with excellent or good viability or ecological integrity

    Environmental Specificity

    ScoreA - Very narrow. Specialist or community with key requirements scarce


    ScoreC - Medium

    CommentThreat categories include: Plant collecting (real) and road maintenance/development (potential).

General Description
Stems 20–60 cm. Leaves linear-lanceolate, 3–7 cm long. Flowers 1 to 3; tepals reddish with yellowish and black-spotted bases, elliptic, long-clawed, 5–7 cm long, spreading; stamens barely included. Capsule narrowly ovoid, 2–4 cm long (Lesica et al. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Species Range
Montana Range Range Descriptions


Range Comments
BC to QC south to ID, NM, IL and GA (Lesica et al. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 64

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)

Moist, usually calcareous meadows, grasslands, fens, woodlands; valleys (Lesica et al. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).
Predicted Suitable Habitat Model

This species has a Predicted Suitable Habitat Model available.

To learn how these Models were created see

Threats or Limiting Factors
Reported threats to Montana's populations of Wood Lily include impacts from livestock grazing and flower gathering by people (MTNHP Threat Assessment 2021). Some populations are grazed by livestock, but the scope and severity of impacts are currently unknown. Flower gathering by people negatively impacts populations where the showy inflorescence is easily seen along popular hiking trails.

  • Literature Cited AboveLegend:   View Online Publication
    • Hitchcock, C. L., A. Cronquist, M. Ownbey, and J. W. Thompson. 1969. Vascular Plants of the Pacific Northwest. Part I: Vascular Cryptogams, Gymnosperms and Monocotyledons. Seattle, WA: University of Washington Press. 914 pp.
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • Britton, N. L. and A. B. Brown. 1913. An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada, and the British Possessions. 2nd Edition in 3 Volumes. New York, NY: Charles Scribner's Sons. B13BRI01PAUS.
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2022. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants, Second Edition. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 779 p.
  • Web Search Engines for Articles on "Wood Lily"
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Citation for data on this website:
Wood Lily — Lilium philadelphicum.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from