Golden Ray Gardens

Lilium Specialists

Growing

Garden Pests

Watch out for snails when your liliums first start coming through the ground. Its a good idea to have some snail bait around them.  Put the bait in a jar with a large hole in the lid to stop your pets from eating it.

Growing Liliums

The striking colours and remarkable range of different Liliums can be used both indoors and in the garden to create a beautiful display.

The range of colours is astonishing red, white, orange, lemon, pink, mixtures of two or three colours, spotted and unspotted. Some of the new hybrids have streaks of contrasting colour referred to as a 'brushmark'. The pollen is also brightly coloured and often in a contrasting hue.

The Liliums range in size from dwarf varieties suitable for pots and rockeries (45cm or 18 inches) to majestic stems over two metres tall (seven to eight feet). The earliest liliums flower in November and the last flowers can be seen in our gardens after Easter. Some liliums will present only one or two flowers per stem whilst others will flaunt dozens of flowers when well established.

All liliums have a characteristic six petalled flower with a shape that varies from star-like to huge soup-bowl forms, from dainty bells to little balls of curved petals.

How Golden Ray Gardens Liliums are grown

Firstly, the soil the Lilium bulbs are planted in is fumigated to destroy fungus and insects that can be harmful to bulb production. The Lily bulbs are then planted in fertilised soil.

When Lilies emerge through the soil, they are foliant fertilised every 14 days. Every alternate 14 days, the Lilium foliage is sprayed with fungicide and insecticide. To ensure quality and perfection, we hand plant and hand dig each Lily bulb. This results in a top quality and disease free product.

You pay a little more, but you get what you pay for. Flower buds are removed to produce strong healthy bulbs. They are then dug by hand to prevent damage to their soft skin and dipped in various chemicals to avoid fungus and insect activity.

Next, the bulbs are stored in cool rooms before being packed into special medium for despatch all over Australia.

When your bulbs arrive...

Your bulbs will be sent in winter as soon as they are dug and treated. They will arrive packed in a professional medium, but they still dislike being out of the ground and should be planted into prepared garden beds or pots containing a quality potting mix as soon as possible.

Alternatively, they can be kept in the crisper of your fridge as long as they are planted before they shoot. Most liliums can be grown in any soil that is slightly acidic and perfectly drained. The sort of soil that supports azaleas will be perfect for most liliums. The drainage is really crucial and in heavy soils you should consider adding potting mix, using raised beds or planting your Liliums in pots. In sandy soil you will need to add potting mix.

Good light is important, although dappled shade in the afternoon is best for the pastels and paler colours which may bleach in full sun. Mulching helps keep the feeding roots cool and reduces water stress.

All bulbs are gross feeders as they store food for the following season. The Lilium bulb is made up of fleshy overlapping scales, like a garlic. These are actually specialised leaves, formed beneath the surface of the soil. Unlike many other perennial bulbs such as gladioli or daffodils, Liliums do not have a fibrous outer coat to protect the bulb when it is out of the ground. This means that your Lilium bulbs must never be allowed to dry out.

If you have to lift your bulbs for any reason replant immediately or store them as we do, in cool, moist conditions.

Cut flowers

If you are growing Liliums as cut flowers, they should be cut just as the buds gain full colour and begin to open. This way the flowers are not damaged in handling or arranging.

Remember that the Lilium has only a single stem per bulb and you must leave enough behind to feed the bulb or you will be disappointed next year.

On the work bench strip the leaves from the lower half of the cut stem and re-cut the ends immediately before placing them in water containing a flower preserver.

Watering Lilies

Your Lilies are now flowering, maintain moisture around your Lily bulbs, re-frain from wetting the Lily folliage or your Lilies may get Botrytis, which looks like brown spots on the Lily leaves.

Don't add preservatives to the water

The other day I went to the see the doctor in Melbourne, and took him a beautiful bunch of Lilies, he said, what I do with them? Do I need to treat the water with preservatives? Not a good idea I said. Some preservatives shorten the life of Lilies, just clean fresh water is what your Lilies want.