Tag Archive: Lily

Calla Lily Rhizomes

The calla lily grows from bulbs, more properly called rhizomes, and will, as most bulbs do, spread by producing even more bulbs. These bulbs can be divided and replanted in another location. The calla lily is a very hardy genus that will grow in more or less any soil as long as the climate is humid enough. In many of the countries where the calla lily originates it is thought of as a weed and is cut down to make way for agriculture. The calla lily can also be propagated through its seeds but it takes a little more time than just digging up the extra bulbs. I am sure that I shall try. I can’t resist seeds.

I unpacked these rhizomes today and was amazed at how big they were. I had thought that they were expensive at £3.95 for each bulb but having seen them I am filled with confidence of their success. The more I read about these fascinating plants the more I want to know. I had debated about whether to plant each bulb in a separate pot but decided in the end to put all three in a large 40cm patio pot. The directions on the pack say plant in rich potting soil and water sparingly until growth starts. Keep indoors until April and keep frost free. The three varieties that I have  planted are Auckland, a beautiful pink, Schwarzwalder, a deep almost black maroon and Albomaculata, white. I can see me buying more of these as they come in an amazing array of colours and are said to have a long flowering period. As with all bulbs grown in containers the soil needs to be changed either every year or every other year.

When grown in pots for keeping indoors the compost should be kept moist and plants should be given a weak solution of liquid plant food every three weeks while they are in growth. The best place to site them is in a west-facing window, where the air temperature does not rise much above 21°C. A south-facing window may be too hot when the sun is at its strongest in summer. Remove the flowers when they start to fade. When the plant has finished blooming, allow the leaves to turn brown, and reduce watering. Stop watering completely once all the foliage has died back.

Francis Masson, was born in Aberdeen, Scotland in 1741. In the 1760s, he went to work at Kew Gardens as an under-gardener, and was sent abroad to hunt for new plants. He sailed with James Cook on HMS Resolution to South Africa, landing in October 1772. Masson stayed there for three years, during which time he sent back to England more than 500 species of plant – including  Zantedeschia .  Information from Graham Clarke.

The red lily beetle, Lilioceris lilii,  loves the delicious lily foliage and will quickly decimate your plants. The only real answer is to seek them out and kill them. being a vivid scarlet red, they are easily spotted.  You should also look out for the eggs on the undersides of the leaves and the grubs.

 

 

Asiatic Lily Double Sensation – Lilium

Asiatic Lily Double Sensation from Farmer Gracy  has fantastic colour and lovely ruffled petals. It is perfect grown in a container for use on the patio or plant the bulbs in the border where they’ll come up every year. Lilium Double Sensation is one of the most exclusive Asiatic Lilies available on the market. Asiatic Lily Double Sensation is known for its double flowers which create an amazing impact once in full bloom. Planting this delicate and rare Lily variety in pots makes a nice and compact show as the flower size of double flowered Lilies is much bigger than other regular Asiatic Lilies. Double flowering Lilies are very rare and it often takes many years to cultivate and offer them on the market. Lilies are perfect for combining with other perennials, grasses or shrubs. They like to have cool, nourished roots whilst their heads reach for the sun but choose shallow-rooting plants to prevent them sulking at the competition for both nutrients and moisture.

I received these three Lily bulbs as a free gift with a delivery of bulbs from Farmer Gracy in the Netherlands. After reading up about them I think that maybe they will need a large pot of their own as they will be bigger than I thought they would be. Update – April 2018 These bulbs are pushing through already. They didn’t flower last year but I am hopeful this year.

Probably the easiest to grow and hardiest of all the lilies, Asiatic Lilies are usually the first ones to bloom, flowering between June and August. Asiatic Lilies also have the widest range of colours but, unfortunately, most do not have a fragrance. Blooms vary in style, usually in terms of how they display their flowers. Some even hang their beautiful heads in a way reminiscent of pretty paper lanterns. Asiatic Lilies should be planted in full sun in soil that drains well. The bulbs don’t do well in soggy soil.