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Best time for dividing lilies

Posted by maggiem_2007 MI (My Page) on
Mon, Mar 23, 09 at 3:19

I have around 10 lilies (I think asiatic) planted in my garden for about 3 years. I noticed last year that the leaves were turning yellow/brown on the bottom. They still bloomed, although I think the blooms were a little smaller. I considered dividing them, but was afraid to, I do not know how to without damaging them. Then I saw the post on this forum about dividing lilies. I think I could do them now with this very good description, but I think I should wait til Fall. Or would it be safe to do now. I'm afraid if I don't they will be even worse looking this year.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Best time for dividing lilies

It is possible to do it now, though fall is the best. If the stems were crowded they are probably in need of division. Asiatics usually need dividing every 3 to 5 years. It really depends on the variety and on how closely they were planted to begin with.

RE: Best time for dividing lilies

I checked and they are asiatic lilies and they are planted 18-24 in apart. I can see bulbils on the top of the soil line right now. So I'm pretty sure there must be a large clump of bulbs under the ground. Maybe I should just try one set of bulbs for now?? There are 10 original lily bulbs planted (yellow, orange, white and one red). And I believe this would be year 4 for them all. Thanks for your help.

RE: Best time for dividing lilies

I divided my lilies as soon as the soil was workable. I dug them up before their noses come up. That way, I could avoid breaking the nose of the bulb or I will lose this year's blooms. Last fall, I left the dried stalk so I know where to dig. You can still divide them now, just be careful not to break the nose. I hope this help.

RE: Best time for dividing lilies

Thanks for the tip about the noses. I have a few that appear to have the noses already popping up. So I picked one to dig up that didn't seem to be sprouting up yet and was able to separate about 7 good sized bulbs with roots. Alot of smaller ones (I think, bulbils) that I also replanted, so maybe they might not bloom this year. I'm crossing my fingers. The main bulb was quite large though and I don't know if there was more than one with that but I left it intact and replanted it in the same spot.

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