This year’s Lemon Lily Restoration event is scheduled for one day only, but many interesting exhibits and experiences are planned. Due to the decline in Lemon Lily populations, the restorers are revitalizing their original mission to focus on education, restoration and conservation of the Lemon Lily.

Dave Stith, an amateur botanist, began surveying Lemon Lily propagation in 2009 in the San Jacinto Mountains with Tom Chester and some friends after learning of their dramatic disappearance. At the event, Stith will speak to topics including an era in 1800s botany

During the former Lemon Lily Festival in 2011, a Lemon Lily bloomed along Strawberry Creek.
Photo by Catherine Allen

when much relevant data was collected about Lemon Lilies and the many things done in Idyllwild over the years to restore their abundance, including future potential for their regeneration.

“Our volunteers have been working in our greenhouse with the primary goal of generating both seeds and bulbs to offer a viable Lemon Lily stock,” said Stith. “They are excited about successes germinating from seed and feel that this method is a promising method of propagation. Once a fair amount of stock is generated, the next step will be replanting in various locations in the Idyllwild area. Last year, two sessions of planting along Lily Creek and other locations were successful.”

Besides guest speaker Stith, the event features live music, face painting, kids’ crafts and a guided nature walk to Lily Creek with a demonstration of a Lemon Lily planting. Master gardeners, Wildlands Conservancy and California Native Plant Society will be on site with information and activities.

Lemon Lily Restoration Day, sponsored by the Idyllwild Nature Center and the Friends of the San Jacinto Mountain County Park, will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 23. The cost is $4 for adults, $3 per child and $1 per dog.