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There are many types of lilies but the general care of lily plants is basically the same.

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Because lilies need good drainage, it helps to mix compost throughout the soil. Dig a hole about 6 inches deep and place the bulb inside with the flat part down and the pointed end up. Space the bulbs about 8 inches apart.

Lily Bulbs

Fill each hole with the soil and press it gently down. Water the ground thoroughly. Lilies love the full sun. If they are planted in the shade, the stems will stretch and lean towards the sun. When the lilies are in active growth, be sure to water them frequently. Additional care of lily plants involves removing the dead flowers. Be sure not to cut off more than a third of the stem. If you are growing lilies for indoor arrangements only, it might be best to plant them in a chosen cutting garden , where you can plant fresh bulbs each year.

Lilies: Varieties & Planting Guide

When the lilies bulbs go dormant in the fall, this is the best time to divide the bulbs and replant them. Some of the most popular types of lilies include the following: Asiatic lilies — The Asiatic lily is the earliest to bloom. They are also the easiest to grow. This lily will grow almost anywhere.

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Most are unscented, but they have the widest variety of colors. Martagon lilies — Martagon lilies have whorled leaves and turkscap flowers. It comes in many colors and is often freckled with flecks of color. Martagons do not grow well in hot climates. Trumpet lilies — Trumpet lilies are known for their trumpet-like flowers and are very fragrant. Tiger lilies — Tiger lilies are very hardy.

The flowers are recurved and freckled. They multiply in clumps and produce more than a dozen flowers on each stem. Its colors range from a golden yellow into a deep red. Rubrum lilies — The rubrum lily resembles the tiger lily, although the colors range from white to deep pink and have a sweet scent. Plant them in pots at least 6 inches wide, in potting soil heavy with organic material and a pH of 6.

A mixture of 3 parts garden soil, 2 parts peat moss, and 1 part sand makes a good growing medium for potted lilies. Lilies grown indoors are usually smaller, and they require relatively warm conditions—68 to 85 degrees F. Grow them in conditions that are as bright as possible. To force lilies to bloom at a designated time, they will first need to be chilled for a period of about 12 weeks this can be done in a refrigerator , then planted about 90 days before you want them to bloom.

For example, if you want bulbs to flower on Valentine's Day, chilling should begin around September 1, with the bulbs planted just before Thanksgiving. It can take some experimentation to achieve the right timing to produce blooms exactly when you want. When chilling in a refrigerator, make sure to keep the bulbs separate from fruits and vegetables, which off-gas substances that can affect lily bulbs. Like most lilies, 'Stargazer' bulbs create small "bulblet" offshoots attached to the parent bulb, and these can be broken off from the parent bulb and replanted to create more plants.

How to Grow Lilies

Lilies can also be propagated by breaking off individual scale segments from the parent bulb and replanting them. It generally takes several years for the replanted bulblets or scales to become large enough for the plants to bloom, but diligently caring for them with proper water and fertilizer will speed this process somewhat. Hybrid plants such as 'Stargazer' lilies are often a little more temperamental than other lilies, and they reproduce somewhat less vigorously than species varieties.

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Many lilies, including Stargazers, are toxic to cats, though harmless to people and dogs. Even small ingestion two or three leaves can cause fatal kidney or liver failure in cats. Avoid growing the plant indoors if you have cats. Treatment by a veterinarian may include flushing the stomach, followed by IV fluids. Hybrid lilies are usually pest free, but potential diseases include lily mosaic virus, bulb rot, and Botrytis a fungal disease. Diseased plants should be promptly removed including the bulbs and destroyed.

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How to Grow. Temperature and Humidity. Growing in Containers. Pests and Diseases. Pink Stargazers: This well-known type is dark pink to red with white edges and rose- or brown-colored spots. It is hardy in zones 3 to 8 and flowers in early to mid-summer. It is fairly compact, growing to about 30 inches. This type tolerates some shade. White Stargazers: White Stargazers have very large, showy blooms with petals that curl back at the tips. They are good for warmer climates, through zone This type requires full sun, and grows as much as 48 inches tall. It flowers in mid- to late-summer.

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Golden Stargazers: This new category is a cross between Oriental lilies and trumpet lilies. It has deep yellow blooms with red spots, with petals that curl back at the tips. It does well in part shade to full sun, grows to 4 feet tall, and flowers in mid-summer.

It is suitable for zones 3 to 9. In addition to Stargazer, other popular Oriental hybrid lilies include:. Read More.

★ How to: Grow Lily Bulbs in Containers (A Complete Step by Step Guide)