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Hello everybody !!! I am looking to add more lily bulbs to my garden and so far the Easter lilies have grown beautifully. In fact they are growing right now and I can't wait for the blooms to start showing up but that will be some months from now. I want to grow some more lilies that will grow under the same conditions but am completely lost. Any help will be appreciated.
Maniac, maybe I'm wrong, but isn't lolium longiflorum kind of a one flower group? That said, I'm wondering if Roly might not enjoy longiflorum asiatics or longiflorum orientals. I grow both and they are wonderful.
Lilium Red Alert is an LA that has been successful for me:
Thank you both for your responses. I haven't measured the soil ph in my area but more than the ph I though that the hardiness zone was the issue. The longiflorum-asiatic and longiflorum-oriental crosses I don't know if they'll grow well here. The longiflorum alone have grown to bigger plants and more plants so they seem to be growing and multiplying beautifully. I could get a ph tester and find out what my ph is if needed.
Roly0217: Well, plant hardiness zone is an issue because you live in zone 10. Hardiness zones ( tho not totally ) are quite related to something called 'vernalization', a resting period of near dormancy with natural lower temperature. It is during this resting period that things like bud count and flower quality are being programed within the bulb for next season. This would apply to most all modern day common, commercially available lilium--like the ones I think you want to try.
So, the question becomes then, not so much will they live and thrive well, but how well will they flower. Its thought that as a general rule of thumb, 400 hours at 35 degrees F provides a good vernalization period. ( Note added: Your soil temperature in Miami will never be that low for that long.) But like the hardiness zones these numbers are not absolute; only a guidline. Lilium growing is not an exact science. More and more knowledge is being gained every year. If fact, there is now increasing evidence that the OT(oriental trumpet) group does well even much further south than originally thought. And we may find to some extent that may be true with the LO and LA groups as well.
I suggest trying a couple of each group this spring season and see how well they do next year. They obviously will bloom well this year since spring marketed bulbs are vernalized at the source. Planted this spring, you will have lots of flowers in 60 to 70 days. But the real 'proof in the pudding' will be how well they flower next year.
Most lilium prefer a slightly acidic soil with a pH, i.e. 6.5, although the trumpet group will still do well with pH values slightly above neutral or 7.0
You know, I am wondering whether I misread your original question, which relates to high heat. For me, trumpets do beautifully in our conditions, which can include 100 degree heat. I have several of them, and they not only handle the heat well but multiply nicely.
I find orientals to be less likely to return, and even some of the more reliable ones struggle in high heat. Casa Blanca, while normally very reliable, tends to burn when temperatures reach 90 heat. I had to move mine to preserve them.
Thank you all for your responses. No wonder I like this community so much. My concern was due to the pre cooling needed by the oriental and asiatic lilies which I can't give them here. My neighbor has had L. longiflorums for years now and every year they look more beautiful than the previous year. So I guess my question is what lilies will grow under the same climatic conditions as the longiflorums.
I have a bunch of lilies in my minifridge right now because I moved, could not plant them, and did not want to leave them behind. I have done this before. I received lilies a couple of years ago and never got around to planting them, so I popped them in my minifridge, which was originally purchased to keep my seeds cool (I am getting 95% germination from 12 year old seed because it is refrigerated).
I took the lilies out of the ground, rinsed them, patted them dry, put them in seed starting mix (no fertilizer in that) and put them in slighly opened plastic bags - all 68 of them. It's the kind of refrigerator one would buy for a dorm room. It has no freezer - it is a refrigerator only, and it has a temperature of 40 degrees.
So if you have room in your main refrigerator, and you are careful to keep them away from ripening fruit like apples and pears, or if you are willing to invest in a small fridge, you can have just about any lily you like.
Oh Donna, you moved from that beautiful home? Ah, well, a chance to start over, I guess.
Roly, if you do decide to refrigerate some, Lisa (Buggy Crazy) told me a couple of years ago, the best temp to keep the at is around 30. I had an order coming from MAK lilies for container sales, and they sent it in February. Eek. But all survived, and did well.
If you do want to just grow them as annuals, pre cooled ones from some of the Dutch growers will cost you as little as a dollar in a mix of 25. I don't think that's a bad price to have an annual.
Yes, it was a shame, but it had to be done. Thank you for mentioning it. I put 13 years into he garden, and I didn't really want to leave home, plants and hardscaping behind. But I took all kinds of things, including six peonies, and lots of perennials, grasses, and even an oak leaf hydrangea, not to mention lots of bulbs like alliums, chionodoxa and daffs. If I loved it and could lift it, it came with me. Many are in the garage in pots. I learned that if you want it badly enough you can do it. I dug up peonies in bud in April that actually bloomed. Then I had to move the ones in terra cotta pots that I couldn't plant into plastic pots in the garage, since terra cotta shatters in varying temps. They rewarded me by showing eyes in december. When I check them, the eye are on hold, but they will clearly bloom in spring. Moving peonies twice in one season is supposed to be a no-no. I found out that the "rules" of doing things are more flexible than I would have imagined.
I try to look on the bright side. I have an almost empty yard to fill. It has more shade, but I discovered that a lot of my plants actually prefer shade. The previous people were here for 20 years and did almost no perennial gardening. But they were heavy berry and veggie gardeners and I have a full composting set-up, as well as raspberry and other berry vines that are perennial, and so good to go in spring.
The cooling thing really does work. I was given a lily I forgot about that was in the fridge for a year and a half. Then I planted it in a terrible place. Then I dug it up and put it in a pot. It was an LO. It did fantastically! I'm really looking forward to planting my 68 lilies in the spring - some in pots, some in the ground, and some on the south facing patio. What an adventure.
Hi Dale: Your post is valuable information about what we're learning of LAs doing well farther south. How long have you had your LAs and when did you plant them, during the spring or fall season? Thanks!
I planted them in spring, that's when they were sent to me. You can fall plant them here too. I sold them to clients for perennial beds. Last time I saw them they had grown into large, multi-bulb clumps. I should have taken a photo, but, I didn't.
Thanks Dale. Information coming from someone with your background with hands on practical applications like you have makes your findings dependable and very much appreciated. Those pictures you posted here are beautiful. You must have some very happy clients! ( I wish You lived in my neighborhood).
I know you already know this ( but some other readers might not ), the reason they sent you the bulbs in the spring is they played it safe; you being in zone 10 and all. They knew their prechilled bulbs would bloom the first year regardless. It would be interesting to 'track' those LAs your clients have, just to see how well they bloom in a couple years. It is characturistic of LAs to multiply rapidly.
I thought your recommendation of a mix was an excellent one. Keep us posted on any lilium findings you might encounter along the way. I grow lilies for a hobby and am very interested with your success of them in Tampa. A very interesting post!
I have grown Asiatic types in pots, they get some winter chill because the pots cool off much faster than the soil. A northern exposure in winter would help. They bloomed great the first year, hardly at all the second and were gone by the third year.
Dale, what about refrigerating the lilies (away from fruit, like apples and pears, that produce ethene gas)? I refrigerated a longiflorum I was given too late in the season to plant, put it in the ground in spring, and it did beautifully.
I love amaryllis. I got one to bloom a second time by putting it in the garden for a season and repotting it. But it did not work the second year. And wow amaryllis is expensive!
Roly0217: You could try these: 'El Condor', 'Gizmo' or 'Pink Heaven' These are the names of three Easter X Oriental hybrids. They are part of a Longiflorum-Oriental group, abbreviated LO. One source you could go to is http://www.bdlilies.com You'll see them there. Another source is http://www.farawayflowers.com 'Gizmo' is white, The other two are pink. Pink has a tendency to fade with heat. Spring shipping for most lilium sources usually starts in early to mid March.
Dale: Love your gardens! Amaryllis are beautiful, aren't they! I was pleasantly surprized to find Amaryllis growing as far north as Columbus, Ga in relatives gardens there, in a somewhat favorable protected area of course. And I even found them around old, long abandoned homesites in rural far southwestern GA. The only living remnant of what remained -- of what I thought must have been a happy place at one time.
See my post above--might be worth a try just to see for fun.