Category Archives: How to plant lilies

Planting guide for Tree lilies

This question was asked by
Sarah

Bought Oracle bulbs from you at Hampton Court show but can’t find them on your website when I look for planting advice & height. Could you send me brief details please? Thanks

Hello there,
Lilium Oracle is an oriental trumpet lily:

Planting Instructions:
Oriental Trumpet Hybrid Lily Bulbs should be planted as soon as possible. Ideally in the Spring but can be planted up until the Autumn.
Find a location with full sun or partial shade with well-drained soil.
Oriental Trumpet Hybrid Lilies can tolerate most soil types, Acidic or Alkaline.
Arrange the Lilies in an odd-number grouping.
If planting in the garden, plant the bulbs about 8″ apart. Space the groupings at least 3 feet apart.
If planting in pots, plant 3 bulbs in a 10-14″ ‘patio type’ pot using good-quality, multi-purpose compost.
Plant the bulbs with 4-6″ of soil above them.

Care Guide:
Lilies can tolerate very cold conditions but they do not like to get wet.
If planting in borders in the garden, the soil must be well drained and, preferably, humus rich.
If planting in pots, make sure lilies are kept moist but do not get waterlogged.
Lilies prefer to be planted in a location with at least half a day’s full sunshine, if it’s a bit too shady they will lean their stems towards the sun.
Lily bulbs do not like to be dried out so they must be kept in soil at all times.
Try to plant your lilies where they will dry out after rain to prevent Botrytis, a fungus that spots the leaves. If you do see brown spots on your leaves, spray with a fungicide recommended for roses.
If planting in pots, it may be an idea to tilt the pots on their side in the winter to prevent waterlog.
When the Lily has finished flowering, cut any seed heads back and allow the foliage to die back naturally. Do not be tempted to cut the stem back until stems becomes hollow and brown.
After a few years of flowering, you may find the Oriental Trumpets Lily produces less blooms, it may be time to lift your bulbs and divide them by breaking off the bulblets. All the bulbs will then need replanting.
To prevent Lily Beetles from damaging your lilies, we recommend using the Lily Beetle Prevention Spray. This Spray (Grazers G4) will also stimulate growth of your lilies.
You can feed your lilies with a Tomato Feed to stimulate and strengthen your lilies when you start to see signs of growth. Make up your tomato feed with half the recommended dilution (written on the instructions on the bottle) and feed once every 3 weeks.

The Hart Family

Lifting and dividing Tree lilies

This question was asked by
L. M Jeffery

I’ve been buying ‘tree lilies’ from you for the past few years and now the original purchases (High Tea) have made quite large clumps with 4 or 5 flowering stems. They are stunning, but are they likely to continue to bulk up? If they are, I think it might be time to lift and divide them once the foliage has died back. What is your advice, please?

We would advise lifting and dividing your bulbs after 3 to 4 years of planting.
The baby bulbs will take some time to get established though.

The Hart Family

Planting Roselily Isabella bulbs

This question was asked by
G. Ellis

Lovely to see you at Chelsea 2019! Bought Isabella rose Lily x5. Question is can I plant all 5 in a 10-14 inch pot please? The pot doesn’t taper so is quite ‘roomy’. Look forward to shopping with you in the future.

Yes – that that’s absolutely fine to plant your 5 x Roselily Isabella lilies in a 10-14inch. The more space the better.

The Hart Family

Planting advice for lillies bought at Chelsea

This question was asked by
Gillian

Congratulations on the success of your beautiful stand at Chelsea. I bought a pack of “Lilium OT Master”, but can not find it on your database.

I plant lilies in pots & have read your planting advice. For this variety should I use 50/50 ericacius % John Innes No 3? Or Multipurpose with added John Innes?

I bought some Grazers, which I am hoping will work!

Hello there,
Thank you for your lovely comments and for taking the time to email.
Lilium Master is an Oriental Trumpet lily so it is happy in any well-drained soil, so either of those combinations they will be happy in. You can always add some grit for good drainage too.

The Hart Family

Will lily bulbs grow on a north facing balcony?

This question was asked by
Mrs D Leadley

Will lily bulbs grow on a north facing balcony? I am interrested in the Roselilies.

As long as they get some Sunshine through out the day – at least a few hours and they are planted in a well-drained soil, then they will be absolutely fine.

Roselilies are a gorgeous variety. They have no stamen but they still have a lovely fragrance.

Roselily ‘Elena’ (SKU17618)

Roselily ‘Natalia’ (SKU17617)

Roselily ‘Isabella’ (SKU17619)

The Hart Family

montego bay

This question was asked by
D. Bourne

I bought some lilies from you about three years ago, one of which was called montego bay this appears to be discontinued.
Can you give me the name of a similar colour lily?

Good afternoon,
The closest in colours to Montego Bay would be:

Avalon Sunset (SKU17947)

Nymph (harts1027)

Shocking (harts1026)

The Hart Family

planting instructions for lilium oriental manifesto

This question was asked by
J. Keane

We bought above bulbs recently from Harts Nursery at Chelsea flower show but cannot find the care instructions for them. Do the bulbs need acid soil?

Yes – Lilium Manifesto is an Oriental lily and therefore prefer an ericaceous soil. Ensure it has plenty of drainage too. I have listed some tips for you below:
Find a location with full sun or partial shade with well-drained soil.
Oriental Lilies prefer an Acidic/Ericaceous Soil type. They do not tolerate Lime very well.
Arrange the Lilies in an odd-number grouping.
If planting in the garden, plant the bulbs about 5-8″ apart. Space the groupings at least 3 feet apart.
If planting in pots, plant 3 bulbs in a 10-14″ ‘patio type’ pot using good-quality, multi-purpose compost.
Oriental Lilies tend to grow exceptionally well in pots and tubs.
Plant the bulbs with 4-6″ of soil above them.

The Hart Family

Which soils for different lilies?

This question was asked by
Lynn Francis

Could you please tell me what is the diference between soils? It gets confusing. I have been having success growing my lillies in John innes 1- 2- 3
and also Miracle grow compost, which seems to give me better results. I have been growing in containers, but I am planning to remove and plant in the ground,
Will this be better for the lilies?
Thanks
Lynn

Hi Lynn

If you are planting them in the garden you must have well-drained soil. I would need to know which varieties of lilies you have to advise which soil is best. Orientals need an Acidic soil. Asiatics lilies require an Alkaline Soil. Really, if you have a well-drained soil, replant them in the garden and see how they grow, you can always put them back in pots if they don’t do so well. I hope this help.

Loraine Hart

Advice on preparing lilies for overwintering

This question was asked by
Frances

Hi there,

I bought a couple of lily collections from you last year at the Wisley flower show – they’ve made a fantastic display in the garden this year. Thank you.

This has been my first experience with growing lilies and I am a little confused now with how far to cut them back in preparation for winter.

I have read lots of advice about pruning the seed heads and “allowing the foliage to die back naturally” but once the foliage has begun to turn brown, how much of the main stem or stalk should be cut back?

Hope you can help.

Hi there,

When the Lily has finished flowering, cut any seed heads back and allow the foliage to die back naturally as you say. Do not be tempted to cut the stem back until stems become hollow and brown. Once this has happened, you can cut the stem back to the service or leave about an inch of stem.

https://www.hartsnursery.co.uk/Care-and-Planting-Guide.html

Kind regards
Loraine Hart