At WiseGEEK, we're committed to delivering accurate, trustworthy information. Our expert-authored content is rigorously fact-checked and sourced from credible authorities. Discover how we uphold the highest standards in providing you with reliable knowledge.

Learn more...

What is a Leopard Lily?

Autumn Rivers
Autumn Rivers

The leopard lily is a perennial herb that is often used for medicinal purposes. It tends to thrive along coasts and near streams in coniferous forests, and often blooms in both spring and summer. It is also often called the Blackberry lily or Leopard flower, and is native to China, Korea, and Japan. This kind of plant is rather easy to care for, and does well in full sunlight and fertile soil. The flowers are usually orange or yellow in color, with red spots, often attracting animals such as deer.

This kind of plant is known for its long stems, pointy leaves, and speckled flowers, which usually have six leaves on each one. The leopard lily usually looks its best when planted between a few types of ornamental grasses, or against a wall. In nature, this plant can usually be spotted on hillsides along streams or oceans, as it does best in moist soil. The flowers of this plant are in full bloom in late spring until early in the summertime, and often attract the attention of small to medium animals that like to eat this plant. For the best chances of survival, the leopard lily should be kept moist and protected from animals, and gardeners should weed around the plant often.

Woman with a flower
Woman with a flower

One unique trait of the leopard lily is that it can be used to cure or prevent various illnesses. For example, conditions targeting the repertory system, such as laryngitis and tonsillitis, can often be cured with the leopard lily. It can also reduce fever and inflammation, and act as an expectorant, purgative, and analgesic. Considering its many healing properties, it should not come as a surprise that some investigators are researching its value as a cure for prostate cancer, as well. One warning is that pregnant women should not use this plant for its curative properties, as it has not yet been deemed safe for them.

Aside from its use as a healing plant, the leopard lily tends to add color to gardens and flower bouquets. Despite the fact that the plant tastes good to many animals, and is quite safe to ingest, it is not known for tasting very good to humans, so its use in recipes is not recommended. The colorful flower, however, adds a tropical feel to any environment, which may make it a great way to beautify an otherwise drab yard or decorate for a tropical-themed party.

Discuss this Article

Post your comments
Forgot password?
    • Woman with a flower
      Woman with a flower