Open the Advanced Search

Triplet Lily

Triteleia laxa

Please keep in mind that it is illegal to uproot a plant without the landowner's consent and care should be taken at all times not to damage wild plants. Wild plants should never be picked for pleasure and some plants are protected by law.
For more information please download the BSBI Code of Conduct PDF document.


Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Asparagaceae (Asparagus)
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
90 centimetres tall
Gardens, grassland, woodland.

Purple, 6 petals
The flowers of the Triplet Lily are admired for their enchanting beauty, vivid colors, and delightful fragrance. Whether found in wild meadows or cultivated gardens, they add a touch of elegance and charm to any floral display.
The fruit of the Triplet Lily is a capsule, which is a dry, dehiscent fruit that splits open to release its seeds. The capsules are typically elongated and cylindrical in shape, resembling small tubes or pods. They develop at the base of the flowers, where the ovary was located. As the capsules mature, they change in color from green to a brownish hue. The outer surface of the capsules may have a textured or ribbed appearance, adding visual interest to the fruiting parts. When fully ripened, the capsules split open, revealing several small, dark seeds within. The seeds of Triplet Lily are relatively small and have a smooth surface. They are usually black or dark brown in color. Once released from the capsules, these seeds can be dispersed by various means, including wind, water, or animals. The fruiting parts of Triplet Lily play a crucial role in the plant's reproductive cycle, ensuring the dispersal and subsequent germination of its seeds. While the flowers of Triteleia laxa are the main attraction, the development and appearance of its fruiting parts contribute to the overall life cycle and ecological significance of the plant.
The leaves of the Triplet Lily, commonly known as Ithuriel's spear or triplet lily, are an important and distinctive feature of the plant. They are basal leaves, meaning they originate from the base of the plant rather than along the stems. The leaves of the Triplet Lily are long and slender, resembling blades of grass. They are typically smooth in texture and have a linear shape. The leaves arise from the underground bulb and grow in a dense tufted arrangement. The leaf color of the Triplet Lily is generally a vibrant green, providing a lush and attractive backdrop for the flowers. The leaves are erect and can reach a height of up to 30 centimeters (12 inches), though they may vary in length depending on growing conditions and maturity of the plant.Each leaf is typically around 0.5 to 1 centimeter (0.2 to 0.4 inches) wide, with parallel veins running along its length. The edges of the leaves are usually smooth and may slightly curve or arch. The leaves of Triteleia laxa play an important role in the plant's photosynthesis, converting sunlight into energy. They also contribute to the overall aesthetic appeal of the plant, creating a pleasing contrast between the slender foliage and the colorful flowers. Overall, the leaves of the Triplet Lily are slender, linear, and green, complementing the beauty of the plant's flowers while fulfilling their vital role in the plant's growth and development.
Triplet Lily, scientifically known as Triteleia laxa, possesses a subtle and pleasant fragrance that adds to its allure. While the fragrance of flowers can be subjective and can vary among individuals, many people describe the scent of Triplet Lily as mildly sweet and reminiscent of honey or a delicate floral aroma. The fragrance of Triplet Lily is not overpowering but rather a gentle and inviting scent. It tends to be more noticeable when encountering a cluster of blooming flowers, where the collective fragrance can create a captivating atmosphere. As you approach the flowers, you may catch a whiff of their delicate aroma, which can be particularly enticing on warm and sunny days. The fragrance of Triplet Lily serves a purpose in attracting pollinators such as bees and butterflies. These insects are drawn to the scent as they search for nectar and play a vital role in the pollination process of the plant. By emitting a pleasant fragrance, Triplet Lily effectively lures these pollinators, ensuring the transfer of pollen between flowers and promoting successful reproduction. It is important to note that the strength of the fragrance may vary among different individuals and environmental conditions. Factors such as the time of day, temperature, and the age of the flowers can influence the intensity of the scent. Furthermore, personal scent preferences can also contribute to how individuals perceive and appreciate the fragrance of Triplet Lily. In conclusion, Triplet Lily emits a gentle and pleasing fragrance, often described as mildly sweet and floral. Its fragrance not only adds to the overall aesthetic appeal of the plant but also plays a role in attracting important pollinators to facilitate its reproductive cycle.
Other Names:
Bloomeria, Blue Brodiaea, Common Triteleia, Fool's Onion, Grassnut, Ithuriel's Spear, Long Rayed Triteleia, Pretty Face, Starflower, Wally Baskets, Wild Hyacinth.
Frequency (UK):

Other Information


The Triplet Lily, scientifically known as Triteleia laxa, is a captivating and elegant flower native to western North America. With its tall stems and vibrant, trumpet-shaped flowers in shades of lavender, blue, purple, or white, this perennial plant adds a burst of color and grace to gardens and natural landscapes. Triplet Lilies are relatively easy to cultivate, thriving in well-drained soil and partial sun. They are also vital for pollinators, attracting bees, butterflies, and other insects with their nectar-rich blooms. The Triplet Lily's cultural significance, medicinal uses, and water-wise qualities further enhance its appeal. Whether used in floral arrangements, educational studies, or conservation efforts, Triteleia laxa continues to captivate us with its natural beauty and ecological importance.


Introduction: Nature has blessed us with an astounding variety of flowers, each with its own unique charm. Among these floral wonders, the Triplet Lily, scientifically known as Triteleia laxa, stands out as a true gem. This vibrant and elegant flower has captured the hearts of botanists, horticulturists, and flower enthusiasts alike. In this blog, we will delve into the captivating world of Triteleia laxa, exploring its origins, physical characteristics, cultivation, and the significance it holds in gardens and natural landscapes.

  1. Origins and Distribution: Triteleia laxa, commonly referred to as the Triplet Lily, Ithuriel's Spear, or Wild Hyacinth, is a bulbous perennial plant native to the western regions of North America. Its natural habitat spans from southern British Columbia, Canada, down to California and parts of Mexico. The plant typically thrives in grasslands, meadows, and open woodlands, where it adds a burst of color and elegance to the landscape.

  2. Physical Characteristics: The Triplet Lily possesses a distinctive beauty that sets it apart from other flowers. Each plant produces multiple tall, slender stems, ranging from 1 to 3 feet in height, crowned with a cluster of delicate, star-shaped flowers. The blossoms showcase a striking combination of colors, featuring shades of lavender, blue, purple, or white, with darker veins adding an enchanting touch. The six tepals (petals and sepals) form a tube-like structure, flaring open at the ends, making the flowers appear trumpet-shaped. The foliage consists of long, grass-like leaves that provide an attractive backdrop to the elegant blooms.

  3. Cultivation and Care: Gardeners and flower enthusiasts are drawn to Triteleia laxa not only for its beauty but also for its relatively easy cultivation. Here are some key factors to consider when growing Triplet Lilies:

a. Climate and Sunlight: Triplet Lilies thrive in full sun or partial shade, making them adaptable to a range of garden settings. They prefer a Mediterranean-like climate, characterized by mild winters and dry summers.

b. Soil Requirements: Well-draining soil is essential for the successful cultivation of Triteleia laxa. Loamy or sandy soils with a slightly acidic to neutral pH level are ideal. Ensuring proper drainage helps prevent the bulbs from rotting.

c. Planting and Propagation: Triplet Lilies can be propagated through both seeds and bulbs. Bulbs should be planted in the fall, approximately 3 to 4 inches deep and spaced 3 to 4 inches apart. It is recommended to soak the bulbs in water for a few hours before planting to help stimulate growth.

d. Watering and Maintenance: Once established, Triplet Lilies require moderate watering. During the growing season, it is important to keep the soil slightly moist but not waterlogged. Regularly removing spent flowers and maintaining a weed-free bed will help promote a healthy plant.

  1. Ecological Significance: Beyond its aesthetic appeal, Triteleia laxa plays a crucial role in supporting pollinators and maintaining ecological balance. The trumpet-shaped flowers are particularly attractive to various species of bees, butterflies, and other pollinating insects, which visit the blooms to collect nectar and transfer pollen. By providing a nectar source, the Triplet Lily contributes to the conservation of native pollinators, ensuring the successful reproduction of many plant species.

  2. Garden Uses and Landscaping: The Triplet Lily's captivating blooms make it a popular choice for gardens and landscaping projects. Its tall stems and vibrant flowers create vertical interest and add a splash of color to beds, borders, and meadows. The lilies also make delightful cut flowers, bringing their beauty indoors and infusing any space with their enchanting fragrance.

  3. Cultural and Symbolic Significance: Triteleia laxa has cultural significance among Native American tribes in its native range. The bulbs and flowers of the plant were traditionally used for medicinal purposes, and the plant held symbolic value in ceremonies and rituals. Today, the Triplet Lily continues to be cherished for its natural beauty, representing grace, elegance, and resilience.

The Triplet Lily, or Triteleia laxa, is a testament to the extraordinary diversity of nature. Its slender stems, vibrant flowers, and graceful presence have captivated the hearts of flower enthusiasts around the world. Whether adorning a meadow or brightening a garden, the Triplet Lily brings joy and natural beauty wherever it grows. By appreciating and cultivating this remarkable plant, we not only connect with nature but also contribute to the preservation of its delicate balance. Let us celebrate the enduring allure of Triteleia laxa and cherish its place in our botanical tapestry.

More Information on the Triplet Lily

Varieties and Hybrids: Within the Triteleia laxa species, there are a few notable varieties and hybrid cultivars that have been developed to enhance the diversity and appeal of these lilies. Some popular varieties include:
  • 'Corrina': This variety boasts deep violet-blue flowers with white centers, creating a striking contrast and adding a touch of drama to the garden.

  • 'Rudy': With its vibrant reddish-purple blooms, 'Rudy' is a standout variety that adds warmth and intensity to any floral display.

  • 'Queen Fabiola': This hybrid cultivar showcases large, rich blue flowers and is often chosen for its prolific blooming and increased vigor.

  • 'Koningin Fabiola': Similar to 'Queen Fabiola,' this cultivar features beautiful blue flowers and is known for its excellent garden performance and reliability.

Companion Planting: Triteleia laxa pairs well with a variety of other plants, making it an excellent choice for companion planting. Here are a few suggestions:
  • Alliums: Triplet Lilies and ornamental Alliums, such as Allium giganteum or Allium 'Purple Sensation,' create a harmonious combination, as their tall flower stalks and rounded blooms complement each other.

  • Ornamental Grasses: The slender leaves of Triplet Lilies make them an ideal companion for ornamental grasses, which provide a textural contrast and a backdrop for the lily's blooms. Grasses like Festuca glauca or Panicum virgatum work well in this regard.

  • Echinacea: The vibrant purple, pink, or white flowers of Echinacea, also known as coneflowers, harmonize beautifully with the Triplet Lily's color palette. Both plants are also attractive to pollinators, creating a buzzing ecosystem in the garden.

Conservation Efforts: In recent years, there has been an increased focus on the conservation of native plant species, including Triteleia laxa. Due to habitat loss and other environmental factors, the natural populations of Triplet Lilies have faced some challenges. However, efforts are being made to protect and restore these beautiful plants. Conservation organizations and gardening enthusiasts are working together to preserve the species by planting them in native habitats, educating the public about their importance, and incorporating them into sustainable landscaping practices.

Fascinating Facts: To further appreciate the Triplet Lily, here are a few intriguing facts:

  • The name "Triteleia" comes from the Greek words "tri," meaning three, and "teleios," meaning complete, referring to the plant's three-parted flowers.

  • Triteleia laxa belongs to the Asparagus family (Asparagaceae), which includes other well-known plants like asparagus and lilies.

  • The flowers of Triteleia laxa are not only visually appealing but also have a pleasant fragrance, attracting pollinators from afar.

  • Triplet Lilies are known to naturalize easily, forming clumps of bulbs over time. This naturalization tendency makes them suitable for low-maintenance gardens and meadows.

Triteleia laxa, the Triplet Lily, continues to captivate us with its charm, versatility, and cultural significance. Its stunning blooms, ease of cultivation, and ecological importance make it a beloved addition to gardens and natural landscapes alike. As we appreciate the beauty of Triteleia laxa, let us also remember to protect and nurture this remarkable flower, ensuring its presence for generations to come.

And Some More...

  1. Floral Symbolism: In addition to its aesthetic appeal, Triteleia laxa holds symbolic meanings in different cultures. The trumpet-shaped flowers of the Triplet Lily are often associated with elegance, grace, and purity. In the language of flowers, they can convey sentiments such as admiration, beauty, and devotion. These symbolic connotations have made Triteleia laxa a popular choice for wedding bouquets, floral arrangements, and special occasions where the message of beauty and grace is desired.

  2. Medicinal and Traditional Uses: Native American tribes in the regions where Triteleia laxa grows traditionally used different parts of the plant for medicinal purposes. The bulbs were believed to possess diuretic properties and were used to treat various ailments, including kidney and urinary problems. The flowers were also used in traditional remedies for skin conditions and were believed to have soothing and healing properties. While it's important to note that the plant's medicinal uses should be approached with caution, it showcases the cultural and historical significance of Triteleia laxa.

  3. Biodiversity and Wildlife Support: Triteleia laxa plays an essential role in supporting biodiversity and wildlife. As a native plant, it provides food and habitat for numerous insects, including bees, butterflies, and moths. These pollinators rely on the nectar and pollen produced by the Triplet Lily, contributing to the pollination of other plants in the ecosystem. By including Triteleia laxa in gardens and natural areas, we create valuable habitats that support the delicate balance of local ecosystems and promote the survival of vital pollinator species.

  4. Drought Tolerance and Water Conservation: One remarkable characteristic of Triteleia laxa is its ability to thrive in dry conditions. The plant has adapted to Mediterranean-like climates, where rainfall is limited during the summer months. Its ability to tolerate drought makes it an excellent choice for water-wise gardening and landscaping. By incorporating Triplet Lilies into our outdoor spaces, we can conserve water resources and create sustainable landscapes that are both beautiful and environmentally friendly.

  5. Floral Arrangements and Cut Flowers: The Triplet Lily's striking appearance and enchanting fragrance make it a popular choice for floral arrangements and cut flower displays. The tall, slender stems and vibrant clusters of flowers add elegance and color to bouquets and centerpieces. When using Triteleia laxa in floral arrangements, it is advisable to harvest the flowers in the early morning when they are fully open, ensuring their longevity and the preservation of their beauty.

  6. Educational Value: Triteleia laxa offers educational opportunities for botanists, horticulturists, and nature enthusiasts. Its unique morphology and adaptations, such as the trumpet-shaped flowers and grass-like leaves, provide a fascinating subject for botanical study. The plant's natural habitat and distribution also offer insights into the ecological systems and environmental factors that influence its growth. By exploring and studying Triteleia laxa, we gain a deeper understanding of plant diversity, adaptation, and the intricate web of life in which these beautiful flowers exist.

Conclusion: Triteleia laxa, the Triplet Lily, continues to captivate us with its symbolic meanings, medicinal uses, and environmental significance. Its ability to withstand drought, support pollinators, and enhance the beauty of gardens and floral arrangements makes it a cherished plant. By embracing Triteleia laxa in our lives, we not only appreciate its natural beauty but also contribute to conservation efforts, promote water conservation, and celebrate the rich cultural heritage associated with this remarkable flower. Let us cherish and protect the Triplet Lily, ensuring its legacy for generations to come.

30 Random Facts about the Triplet Lily

Here are 30 random facts about the Triplet Lily (Triteleia laxa):

  1. Triteleia laxa is commonly known as the Triplet Lily, Ithuriel's Spear, or Wild Hyacinth.

  2. It belongs to the family Asparagaceae, which includes plants like asparagus and lilies.

  3. The name "Triteleia" comes from the Greek words "tri," meaning three, and "teleios," meaning complete, referring to the plant's three-parted flowers.

  4. Triplet Lilies are native to western North America, ranging from southern British Columbia, Canada, to California and parts of Mexico.

  5. They typically grow in grasslands, meadows, and open woodlands.

  6. The flowers of Triplet Lilies have six tepals, which are petal-like structures that form a tube-like shape.

  7. The flowers are star-shaped, with the tepals flaring open at the ends, resembling trumpet-shaped blooms.

  8. The color of the Triplet Lily flowers can range from lavender, blue, purple, to white, often with darker veins.

  9. The plant produces multiple tall, slender stems that can reach heights of 1 to 3 feet.

  10. The leaves of Triplet Lilies are long and grass-like in appearance.

  11. Triplet Lilies are perennial plants, meaning they come back year after year from their underground bulbs.

  12. The bulbs of Triplet Lilies are rounded and produce offsets, allowing the plants to form clumps over time.

  13. Triplet Lilies are adaptable to various soil types but prefer well-draining, loamy, or sandy soils.

  14. They are tolerant of drought conditions and are well-suited to Mediterranean-like climates.

  15. Triplet Lilies bloom in the late spring to early summer, adding vibrant colors to the landscape.

  16. The flowers of Triplet Lilies have a pleasant fragrance, attracting pollinators like bees and butterflies.

  17. The nectar-rich flowers of Triplet Lilies are an important food source for pollinators.

  18. Triplet Lilies are known to naturalize easily, spreading and forming colonies in suitable growing conditions.

  19. The bulbs of Triplet Lilies can be propagated through both seeds and offsets.

  20. In Native American traditions, Triplet Lilies had medicinal uses, with the bulbs being used for various ailments.

  21. Triplet Lilies are popular choices for cut flower arrangements, adding beauty and fragrance to indoor displays.

  22. The vibrant colors of Triplet Lilies make them a favorite among flower enthusiasts and gardeners.

  23. They are often used in landscaping projects to add vertical interest and a splash of color to garden beds and borders.

  24. Triplet Lilies can be companion-planted with other species, such as alliums and ornamental grasses, to create visually pleasing combinations.

  25. The Triplet Lily has cultural significance in Native American tribes where it is native, often used in ceremonies and rituals.

  26. Triplet Lilies are attractive to hummingbirds, adding to their appeal for wildlife enthusiasts.

  27. The plant's resilience and ability to thrive in various conditions make it a low-maintenance choice for gardens and landscapes.

  28. Triplet Lilies have been hybridized to create cultivars with enhanced colors and garden performance.

  29. Triplet Lilies contribute to biodiversity by supporting pollinators and other beneficial insects in the ecosystem.

  30. Efforts are being made to conserve and protect Triplet Lilies in their native habitats, ensuring their survival for future generations.

These facts highlight the diverse and fascinating characteristics of the Triplet Lily, making it a beloved flower in the world of botany and gardening.


A Triplet Lily filmed in Adlington, Lancashire on the 7th July 2023.


Please remember to Like and Subscribe to the WildFlowerWeb YouTube channel at