News: Plant Of The Week Oriental Hybrid Lilies


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Plant of the Week - Oriental Hybrid Lilies

Known as the queens of all lilies these magnificent lilies are generally derived from the Japanese species auratum and speciosum. They are the classic late bloomer and continue the lily display, depending on the variety, into September.

The Oriental Hybrids are amongst the tallest of all lilies many growing to over a metre tall. This group is particularly useful for the border where contrasting height is required, especially when combined with some of the dwarf oriental varieties. If you are planting in pots use the largest ones you have and plant deep enough to allow for the growth of the stem roots.

These lilies are fairly easy to grow but do require a soil containing plenty of leaf mould and an open sunny position. Like all lilies, they like a moisture retentive soil but will not grow well in heavy boggy ground. On clay soils work in some horticultural grit to assist drainage. Try to avoid planting to close to hedges or large trees where they will have to compete for moisture. If growing in an exposed location support the plants by inserting canes close to the stem when the plant is about 60cm tall.

After flowering dead-head the lilies but allow the plant to die back and wither before removing any of the plant material.

Some of my favourite's include:

  • Indus - This beautiful white lily has a lovely perfume and is ideal for cutting.

  • Elusive - This recent introduction is a fine example of the oriental hybrid group, its outward facing owers are beautifully coloured with a soft baby pink overlaid with an apricot glow making it a soft salmon in colour.

  • Bafferari - The immense pure white flowers have hardly any spots and a clear golden band through each petal. Deliciously fragrant variety.

Wishing you all the best in your garden.
Chris Blom

Indus Bafferari

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