Plant Now: Lilies


lily asiatic antique lace
Asiatic lily orange electricOriental lily 'Pico'
Lilium bulbs can be planted now and until September for a summer showing. Oriental, Asiatic and trumpet lilies are the three common types you’ll find at garden centres, but you can also buy more unusual forms from specialist growers. Asiatics are the first to flower from around late November or December, then comes the trumpet lilies around Christmas-time. Then it’s the Orientals, sometimes from December but usually January to March. Trumpets and Orientals are beautifully fragrant; sadly the Asiatics have no perfume.

Plant bulbs in a light, humus-rich soil in sun to light shade. They like moist soil, but it must be free-draining – bulbs won’t survive water-logging. Get your bulbs in the ground as soon as you buy them. The bulbs have no outer papery layer so they’re prone to drying out.

The top photo shows the Asiatic lily ‘Antique Lace’ from The Lily Garden (it’s not available in New Zealand); the middle photo is the Asiactic lily ‘Orange Lily’ and the bottom is the Oriental lily ‘Pico’. Both are available from Garden Post.

Plant Now: Lilies


Lily Tiger Edition

For a fragrant and luxurious treat, you can’t go wrong with lilies. These summer flowers are among the loveliest bulbs, with their elegant, trumpet-shaped blooms that are spectacularly showy in the garden and long-lasting in a vase. There are hundreds of varieties to choose from and the bulbs are in garden centres now. They require chilling for flower development in summer, so the cool ground between May and September is the perfect time for planting. But get them in the ground as soon as you bring them home. Lily bulbs have no outer papery layer so they’re prone to drying out.

Lilium varieties
There are three main types that are commonly available in shops. Asiastic lilies, Trumpet lilies and Oriental lilies. Asiatics are the first to flower from late November or December, but their showy blooms are unscented. Trumpet lilies are next, just in time for Christmas. Then come the Orientals, sometimes from December but usually January to March.  [Read more…]