General Discussion:

Asiatic lilies

Messages posted to thread:

Paul Raney12-Jan-08 12:15 PM EST 5a   
12-Jan-08 05:05 PM EST   
Paul Raney19-Jan-08 10:05 PM EST   
Ferne, Kamloops, B.C.22-Jan-08 05:17 PM EST 5b   
Lorraine Hainsworth27-Jan-08 05:36 PM EST 2b   
Ceara31-Jan-08 10:38 AM EST 4   

Subject: Asiatic lilies
From: Paul Raney (
Zone: 5a
Date: 12-Jan-08 12:15 PM EST

I planted a number of Asiatic Lilies in a tub planter about 5 years ago, and every year, they put on a dazzling display. Well, every year except last year (2007), that is! Last spring, the foliage appeared as it had in the past, lush and green, but to my dismay, not one flower materialized. I applied 20-20-20 and the leaves stayed robust all summer, but no flowers! In prior years, I have simply cut off the dead foliage in the fall and stored the planter in my (cool) cellar over the winter months. Perhaps I need to dig up the bulbs and transplant them? Can anyone offer suggestions? Thanks

Subject: RE: Asiatic lilies
Date: 12-Jan-08 05:05 PM EST

Likely they are overcrowded and need to be divided. Perhaps you could start a second tub planter to have double the blooms!

Subject: RE: Asiatic lilies
From: Paul Raney (
Date: 19-Jan-08 10:05 PM EST

Thanks for the suggestion. I never thought of that, but you may be right. I'm a neophyte at this, but keen to learn, nevertheless. If this works, I'll trumpet the news on this website and you will be a hero! Thanks again for your suggestion.

Subject: RE: Asiatic lilies
From: Ferne, Kamloops, B.C.
Zone: 5b
Date: 22-Jan-08 05:17 PM EST

If the original planter also still has the original soil, it is probably time to throw the original soil mix into the compost or garden and start over with some fresh commercial potting soil while you are busy dividing. Adding chemical fertilizer wouldn't be adequate after that length of time, is my guess. The soil also has to breath and there could also be other things missing after 5 years.

Subject: RE: Asiatic lilies
From: Lorraine Hainsworth
Zone: 2b
Date: 27-Jan-08 05:36 PM EST

Has anyone had success cross-pollinating asiatic lilies? Mine have mostly gone back to yellow after several years.

Subject: RE: Asiatic lilies
From: Ceara
Zone: 4
Date: 31-Jan-08 10:38 AM EST

Yes I agree with the others. Most likely they are now crowded. In my experience with the Asiatics, they need to be dug up every 3 years and separated.

There's a drawing explaining how to divide the bulbs here

Digging up bulbs like that feels like Christmas and you get a nice present. You will be surprised at the work they've done underground over the years and you might end up with some massive bulbs. I saw one on the net once... it was a trumpet bulb and it weighed over 7 pounds!

Also beware of growing them very close together when they are crowded like that. There's a disease that can hit hard especially during wet, damp weather where there's a lack of air circulation between the plants. Once that takes hold it can wipe out lilies quite fast, but the bulbs will recover.

As far as cross pollinating, there are lots of people out there that are successful doing it. Check the NALS site above under the Propagation section for suggestions on how to do it. I never bother with pollen and seeds and more interested in scaling for propagation.

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