- a huge genus of bulbous plants native primarily to the colder regions of the Northern Hemisphere. Although there are some sub-tropical species. The three biggest groups commonly grown include the Asiatic, Oriental and native North American species. The care of all three is similar.
Preferred growing conditions
- Plant in a fast draining, compost enriched garden loam with full sun or a half day of partial sun. Lilies prefer slightly acid soil and are not a good choice for highly alkaline western soils unless you're willing to regularly acidify the soil with soil sulfur. Avoid clay unless amply amended with ample compost to improve drainage.
- Mulch with commonly available mulch materials to a depth of 2 to 3 inches. Cool, moist soil is essential for optimum growth and flowering of lilies.
- Lilies prefer consistent moist soil and need regular irrigation when conditions are dry. They don't like to dry out, but are prone to rot if their planting site is in a depression and accumulates water after a good rain.
- Deadheading keeps the plants looking tidy and help them conserve energy for bulb growth and not seed production. But it will not bring them back into bloom.
- Fertilize generously in the fall with a half and half blend of Yum Yum Mix and good quality compost. This can be repeated in late spring to help build humus levels in their soil.
- Oriental lilies are very fragrant, while Asian lilies are not.
- Some of the taller varieties may require staking in windy climates, as they can get up to 6 ft. tall and be top heavy with lots of flowers.
- Cut back to just above ground level in late fall or early spring.
- Mulch heavily with a 2 to 3 inch layer in late fall as the soil begins to freeze. This is especially important when planting new bulbs in zone 3 and 4 climates. If snow cover is not dependable, make fall mulching a regular practice.
View more Planting Guides, or download our complete Planting Guide for tips on caring for your plants when you receive your order, as well as planting instructions for Perennials, Spring-Planted Bulbs, Fall-Planted Bulbs, Cacti & Succulents, Xeric Plants and more.