planting potted oriental lilies

kc_in_waJuly 27, 2007

I just bought Stargazer and Casa Blanca lilies in pots. They are getting ready to bloom. Will it hurt them to plant now or do I need to leave them in the pots, let them bloom, and plant in the fall?

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hld6(z7 MD)

If you want, go ahead and plant them - but don't separate the bulbs. Just carefully remove the pot and plant the whole thing. After they die back this Fall pull them back out and separate the bulbs and replant. (Potted lily bulbs are planted too shallowly and WAY to close together.)

Of course, if you like them in the pots for now and are careful to water them often (since pots dry out faster) you can do that too. Just be sure not to drown them.


    Bookmark   July 27, 2007 at 11:35PM
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I have a similiar question...I bought a bunch of asiatic lillies from a local garden shop selling off it's merchandise. They had already bloomed but the plants were lush and full and green (I also noticed many new bulbettes (for lack of the correct name) starting to develope on them. I went ahead (and left them intact) but planted them in the ground in various spots in my flower garden.

Now, some of the leaves are yellowing (I'm assuming a normal process) Will I be able to leave them in the ground as is? or should I too take them up this Fall and separate them? And was the advice above to THEN plant them again and leave them in the ground for the winter?

    Bookmark   July 28, 2007 at 12:22PM
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hld6(z7 MD)

Hi rjinga,
They'll probably grow fine next year without replanting. (Lilies can take a LOT of less than ideal conditions.) But, this Fall is an ideal time to space them out. They'll still be in their potted "root ball" and will come out of the ground easily. It might take a little work to untangle the roots - but that will only get more difficult as the seasons go by. (Try to save as many roots as possible - so the bulb has less work to do regrowing them.)


    Bookmark   July 28, 2007 at 9:44PM
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TY for the info Helen. I've decided to wait until fall so I can divide the bulbs. I'm going to build up an area for them so it would be helpful to know how deep the roots grow and since I will be buying soil/mix for this area..what would be the best choices?

    Bookmark   July 30, 2007 at 4:55PM
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hld6(z7 MD)

Hi KC,

As well as having roots from the basal plate of the bulb, lilies are stem rooting so you want to plant them relatively deep, 6"-8". The stem roots provide extra nutrition and stability for the stem. Your lilies should like a built up area since they need drainage. As for the soil, lilies are pretty tolerant - though better soil will be better for them. Also what you put down may be limited by how much $$$ you want to spend. Personally If it's a large area, I'd use cheap top soil amended with shredded pine bark mulch. Of course a nice gardening mix would be better.


    Bookmark   July 31, 2007 at 4:22PM
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