Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Plant Profile: Lilies

Lilies (Lilium sp.) are a perennial bulb that produce a dramatic flower on tall stems. There are many varieties of true lilies from the Asiatic lily, the Longiflorum lily (aka Easter Lilies), the Oriental lily, and all kinds of crosses between these three types. These include hybrids that are double lilies, odorless lilies, and pollen-free lilies.
Most lilies are native to Asia and Europe, but there are three kinds of true lilies that are native to the Northeastern United States. They are the Wood Lily (Lilium philadelphicum), Canada Lily (Lilium canadense), and the Turk's Cap Lily (Lilium superbum).
Lilies are easy to grow and extremely rewarding. They make great cut flowers and combine well in garden beds with other perennial plants.
Plant lily bulbs as soon after you purchase them as possible in spring time for summer blooms. When you can’t plant your lily bulbs right away, store them in a cool, dark place such as in the refrigerator. This will keep the shoots from emerging too soon.
Put the lily bulbs in the ground 6 inches deep and 12 inches apart. Place them gently into the soil without pressing on them, then cover the flower bulbs with soil. As soon as the summer bulbs have been planted, give them a thorough watering to encourage their roots to develop quickly.
Lilies also do well in containers as long as the pots are sufficiently deep and have good drainage. One benefit of growing lilies in pots is that they can be brought forward right when the flowers are about to open and then tucked away when out of bloom. Lilies in containers also require extra fertilizer and have to be watered frequently so they do not dry out.

After flowering, snip off the spent lily flowers, but leave most of the stems standing to allow the plants to collect energy and return for you year and year.

Lilies - You Can Grow That!
The video was produced by Washington Gardener Magazine.
Visuals by Amanda Cash
Audio by Kathy Jentz
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