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Asiatic Lilies

Asiatic Lilies

Eileen Hughes

Haliburton County Master Gardener

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True Lilies belong to the genus Lillium.   They grow from bulbs made of fleshy, overlapping scales with no protective covering.  True Lilies have stiff stems with relatively narrow strap like leaves from top to bottom.  Large showy flowers develop at the tip of each stem, with different shapes - bowl shaped, bell shaped - with reflex petals.

 

Asiatic Lilies are easy to grow and are very popular for our area.  They are very hardy, need no staking and are not particularly fussy about soil, so long as it is well drained.

 

These are all Asiatic Lilies

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Cultivars                        Colour                            Height (Feet)                    Time of Bloom

Enchantment                        Orange                                        2-3                                                    June

Connecticut King                    Yellow                                        3-4                                                    June

Corsica                                 Pink                                                3                                                        June/July

Crete                                        Deep Pink                                3-4                                                        June/July

Dawn Star                              Cream                                        3-4                                                    July



                                                           

Choosing Lilies

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When choosing lilies, consider plant height and blossom season as well as flower colour.  You can visit your garden center when possible where plants are labelled with cultivar names, and see them in bloom.  You can plant them also in containers for the summer, their leaves are very pretty after they have finished blooming but, you must get them into the ground for the winter.


Deadhead flowers as they fade, by breaking them off carefully.  That way, none of the plants energy is "wasted" on seed production.  Do not remove stems or foliage, as they will continue to put energy into the bulb as long as they remain green.  Remove old foliage in late fall or early spring by cutting down the dead stalks.

 

When To Plant:

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Lilies may be planted in early spring or in Sept-Oct.  Small bulbs are 2-4 inches, large bulbs are 4-6 inches in depth - measuring from the top of the bulb.  They grow best in full sunlight.  Plant in groups of 3 to 5 and plant your clusters 3-5 feet apart.  Fertilize each spring with a phosphorous-rich fertilizer such as 5-10-10.  Slow release fertilizers work well.


Watch carefully for the Lily beetle which is red and pick them and put into soapy water/bleach or crush between your fingers.  Lily beetle larvae live in the soil underneath the plant and can decimate a plant if not caught early.  It is rumoured they came from China but of that I am not sure.


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Janice Hardy,
Jul 29, 2011, 7:32 AM