I wouldn’t call myself green-fingered. Although I’m trying really quite hard my gardening style could generally be described as trial and error with an A for effort. Which is why I can say with some certainty that if I can grow Lilies, you can too.
I always thought of lilies as something rather special and delicate. They look it, they smell it and the shops certainly price them like it. BUT they really are a doddle to grow. Outside, inside, in pots and in beds, you name it, they seem to be happy to grow in it.
After being brought these beauties (above) as a late wedding present from my Mum (they are Double Orientals called My Wedding – a great gift for anyone currently looking) I was somewhat concerned they would never make it to flower with me as their Mum but low and behold they not only flowered but are now back in their second year!
After their first floral flush I followed instructions, waited for them to lose their leaves and then trimmed their stems down to little brown stumps. They sat out all winter looking like nothing more than a pot of dirt until the first sunny day of spring and there they were, reaching up to meet the rays!
These big’uns used to be outside but for the time being, I’m keeping them safe and away from the builders indoors. I thought the lack of sun might bother them but they’re troopers and are carrying on as normal.
Below are the newest additions to my Lily brood, they should have names really. Infact, let’s christen them. I’ll call them… Bill and Bob.
So Bill and Bob were bought at Hampton Court Flower show from Harts Nursery. They are just straight up white scented Lilies (I’m sure they have a more technical term) and although they should be very proud of what their Mother gave them, they do have some very impressive brothers and sisters over at the nursery.
You’ll find so many different bulbs that can be ordered online at Harts. They’re only around £2.50 each, plus they go down in price the more you buy. The other great thing about Lily bulbs is that once they have flowered 3 or 4 times you can dig them up to find new bulbs have grown from the first ones! I’ve not gone through the process of separating them out yet but I’ll let you know how I get on when the time comes.
I should add that this is not an add, I’m just really chuffed with these guys selection and how consistently well their bulbs have grown.
So Bill and Bob were planted just a couple of weeks ago and already they are well on their way to having their height marked on the wall.
Planting and initial stages of care couldn’t be simpler for these little guys. Plant them ideally in some sort of bedding soil (they can go in any old soil I’m sure but just to make certain they get the best start in life..) then, plop them in a vaguely sunny space. Don’t be worried about a bit of shade though they can take it. Other than that you make sure their soil doesn’t get too dry- generally water them a bit each day but not so much that they don’t dry out after a couple of days- and that’s really it. You can grow two or three in a relatively small pot (around the sides to help them stand up straight) and they are perfectly happy either there or out in a bed.
There’s something extremely satisfying about watching something grow from a bulb. Even more so when you can fill your room with the scent of Lillies that doesn’t come from the chemicals in an Aldi Candle! OK, ok, I’m a great big fat fan of an Aldi candle but you just can’t beat the real deal flowering in your sitting room.
Don’t tell Bill and Bob but I’m in the market for some more ‘exotic’ Lilies now that I’ve proved my growing ability. For the new garden, I’m thinking some Asiatic ones, although unscented they are amazing colours.