DIRECTION OF LILIUM RESEARCH
The perfect lily would be easily propagated and induced to flower and have a short forcing time, long postharvest life, genetically controlled height, low nutritional requirement, pest resistant growth and a wide variety of flower colours and forms. The route to producing the perfect lily would begin with the plant breeder, who has already produced an incredible array of cultivars in a range of heights. Breeding will also be required to produce pest resistant cultivars and may produce day neutral plants which would be easier to force. Plant physiologists will also need to further research dormancy and may be able to develop a biochemical marker to estimate dormancy to facilitate rapid forcing. Much research has focused on propagation of lilies from seed, cutting and in vitro which may radically alter the propagation and shipping of lilies in the future. Timing of flowering during forcing would be enhanced by the development of a universal heat unit system which could be integrated with a height control system through temperature manipulation (DIF). Further research is needed on height control as DIF and genetics have limitations and chemicals may not be available in the future.
Dole, John M. and Wilkins, Harold F. (1996). DIRECTION OF LILIUM RESEARCH. Acta Hortic. 414, 295-300