If you’re a fan of the dazzling flowers and relaxing scents of lilies but don’t think you have what it takes to grow them at home, then let us show you the way.
As a bulbous plant with large trumpet-shaped, fragrant flowers on a tall, slender stem, it’s all too easy to understand why even the most experienced of gardeners believe that successfully growing lilies at home might be a bit beyond them. The truth is that like all things flora related, a little bit of knowledge goes a long way when it comes to nailing the process.
Before you get started with growing lilies, it’s important to understand the differences between the two primary varieties. True lilies belong to the Lilium family, whereas Daylilies are instead members of the Hemerocallis branch. As the name would suggest, the latter only blooms for a single day, whereas the former flowers for around a week. As such, the cut flowers that many of us are familiar with are actually Lilium varieties, which has around one hundred sub species in its own right. To successfully grow lilies at home in your own garden, let’s focus on true lilies for an easier and more rewarding floral experience.
The Basics Of Growing Lilies At Home
True lilies are grown from bulbs. Unlike many other plants, they don’t have a protective covering to prevent them from drying out, which means that it’s important to get them in the soil as soon as you can as a means to optimise their growth.
To keep them cool, aim to cover your lily bulbs with a layer of compost, and don’t disturb them for at least three to four years. Over time, the bulbs will get bigger, the stems will thicken, and the number of flowers will increase. When spring arrives each year, aim to feed the bulbs with a naturally derived form of plant food. If you’re able to keep the bulbs happy in these early years, you could be rewarded with up to forty five separate blooms on each stem, with your plant reaching a maximum height of two metres if you’re lucky.
As they only require a space 20-30cm wide, growing lilies in pots on a sunny balcony or verandah is also an option. Once you’ve got your initial set up underway, here are a few more of the basics when it comes to successfully growing true lilies or Lilium varieties at home.
Keep Them Moist – Lilies need to be kept moist at all times during the growing period, and are best grown in areas with morning sun or light shade. This also protects them against stunted growth, streaked yellow foliage and the flowers not opening. Try to keep foliage dry when watering, especially at night, to avoid leaf fungal diseases.
Check Your Soil pH – Although lilies will tolerate poorer soils if they are well fertilised, they’re generally big fans of soils that are humus, rich and slightly more acidic than the average. It’s also a good idea to add in a bit of well rotted compost or manure to give the lilies a bit of get up and go while they are busy establishing their growing patterns.
Deadhead Accordingly – When each flower dies back it’s a good idea to cut it away from the plant as a means to encourage further blooms and channel the lily plant’s energy back into the flower growth process. Try not to go overboard though, and make sure you don’t remove more than one third of the stem, as this can impact the plant’s ability, strength and longevity.
From planting, Liliums will usually take just eight to fourteen weeks to flower. As they are generally able to grow in most parts of Australia, growing lilies isn’t as difficult as most gardeners think, so long as they are able to provide the right conditions and support systems for them accordingly. The reward? Unique, fragrant and colourful blooms both in your garden, and via cut arrangements in your home as well.
How To Optimise Your Lilies With Nutrients
Do your plants – and yourself – a favour, and give them a head start by optimising your soil prior to planting. By adding a natural plant food like Biotic Booster, this will help your garden to:
- Provide essential nutrients and microbes
- Act as a liquid fertiliser to unlock your soil’s potential
- Drought proof your plants and lower water consumption
- Increase and speed up the germination process
- Assist in protecting your plants from pests and diseases
- Provide a natural solution that’s safe to use around your herbs, fruit and veggies
If you’re ready to take the leap into improving the health of your plants while minimising the use of chemical based fertilisers, then it may be time to try plant food and plant probiotics. Our Ultimate Garden Health Pack includes our Biotic Booster, FP-60 Probiotic Spray, RE-250 Soil Energiser, plant food and plant probiotics. In each concentrated bottle, millions of natural bacterias are waiting to find a new home in your garden.
Here at Bioweed, we specialise in environmentally friendly gardening products, including herbicides, plant food and plant probiotics, and natural alternatives to traditional gardening solutions. Should you have any questions about how to improve the sustainability of your garden, get in touch with us today.