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How much shade can tiger lilies tolerate?

Posted by lisa33 Zone 6B PA (My Page) on
Sat, Aug 15, 09 at 14:51

A neighbor with beautiful gardens dug out all of her tiger lilies and gave them to me. I have a soft spot for them, because they really remind me of summers in my childhood. I'm trying to decide where to put them. I know they can do well in damp spots, but I can't really say that there is any difference in my yard on that count.

I have lots of choices since I'm still just really getting started on my side and back yards after buying this place a year ago. I recently posted some pictures of my newly-terraced front yard and my efforts at cottage gardening ("Cottage Garden Neophyte...").

The three primary options are to plant the tiger lilies along an east-facing wooden fence that gets morning sun and afternoon shade, or along a west-facing hedge/fence that gets largely afternoon sun, but it can also be dappled in spots because of the plantings along the fence. The third choice is in a bed along the west side of the house where the would get only about 2 hours of sun, max, because of the proximity of the house next door.

My preference would be to plant them along the west-facing hedge/fence because there's nothing there of much value right now--just a hodge-podge of stuff that was intended to create privacy, and most of that is on the neighbor's side of the fence. The east-facing wooden fence is lined with what I think are Siberian lilies that did not produce a single bloom this year. Not sure if they aren't getting enough sun or if it's because they are ancient and haven't been divided in eons. I have a separate post in the lily forum about that ("Total Beginner with Questions"), but I haven't gotten a lot in the way of responses.

Thanks so much if you can help me make a choice here!

Lisa :)

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: How much shade can tiger lilies tolerate?

Hi Lisa!
I have Tiger Lilies (that my neighbor also gave me a few years ago) along the east side of the house. The area probably gets even less sun than yours because of nearby shrubs. They seem to do fine out there. I don't think these lilies are very fussy.

Have you ever noticed those little black 'beads' on the leaf right by the stem? Those are miniature bulbs. If you plant those in the ground they will sprout. I have a few popping up around the base of the parent plant. Very cool!
PS. I have also read that Tiger Lilies should not be planted next to other lilies becasue they carry a virus that can mutate other lilies. I planted mine in an isolated spot.

RE: How much shade can tiger lilies tolerate?

Siberian iris need at least a half day (six hours) of sun for optimum blooming. I never divide unless the clump dies out in the middle - like a doughnut, and puts out sparse blooms around the edges. They sort of tell you when they need dividing.

Tiger lilies are the easiest and most forgiving of the lilies, but to maximize their performance, I'd put them where they can get the most available sun. I have read about the tigers being a virus carrier, too. I do have them in close proximity to Asiatic lilies though in all of my gardens - so far no problems over the course of many years.

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