Lilies are prized for their fragrant flowers and often giant, trumpet-shaped flowers. Lily bulbs are planted in containers and flower borders, and lily plants are the perfect summer flowers to add color and cheer to the garden.
There are two main types of lilies to grow: oriental lily and Asiatic lily. Oriental lilies usually have large, fragrant pink flowers. They thrive in acidic soils and should therefore be grown in containers with ericaceous compost. Asiatic lilies have a greater variety of colors including yellow, orange, red and near-black, but they are not fragrant and tend to be smaller than Oriental types. But they thrive in alkaline soil and are extremely hardy, so they’re easier to grow – just plant the bulbs in the garden or in pots of peat-free multi-purpose compost.
How to grow liliesGrow Oriental lilies in acidic soil or ericaceous compost, and other types, including Asiatic and Turk’s cap lilies in neutral to alkaline soil or multi-purpose compost. All types need a sheltered sunny spot to thrive, and a deep pot if growing in containers. Plant lily bulbs from October to April. Play higher varieties and protect all types from lily beetles. Allow the foliage to die down naturally after flowering.