There are all different kinds of lilies in the world with a variety of shapes and colours. The one thing that all lilies have in common is the stamen. When the flower blooms these are the powdery brown/rust coloured little bits that will make a mess and even stain your fingers and linens so always be sure to take them off ASAP- as soon as the lily opens up. This way they will not be powdery and therefore not stain. If they are powdery its best to place a paper towel underneath or around the vase when taking them off so they don’t drop any powder on your tablecloth. Also, using a Kleenex, napkin or even gloves will prevent the stamen from discolouring your fingers.
The best way to tell if the lily is old or not, is to look at the stamen. If it is powdery and all the blooms are open…it’s old. This is what you are looking for…When there is only one bloom that is open slightly and the rest of the buds are still closed. This way once the first bloom is on its way out the next one will be opening up and so on.
I call it “the gift that keeps on giving” 🙂