Garden Tales: The Lily
Lilies are scene stealers. Wherever they are planted they will grab the garden visitor’s eye. If you are seeking fragrance, form and colour then the lily is your choice.
They look great at the back of a border or standing alone in clumps. There is a large variety to choose from and the gardener can find one or many to suit their site. Lilies are not difficult to grow and the reward they give those who plant them goes far beyond the minimal labour and time invested.
The genus Lilium are herbaceous flowering plants that usually grow growing from bulbs but can it is possible to grow them from seed. Liliacae, or the lily family has There are approximately 110 species. So you can see that there really is much to choose from for your garden.
The lily makes an excellent cut flower and will brighten a hallway or side board, in a small vase alone or arranged with other flowers.
The pink stargazer is a personal favourite. A few years back, I decided to try an experiment. One of the numerous things I enjoy about gardening is the fun you can have trying different ideas. My plan was to grow a stargazer indoors in my living room. We had a window alcove that received ample light and as the room was already a plant haven, I just had to know. So I planted three.
All three reached a height of approximately four feet and all bloomed. The fragrance was magnificent, for a time, that is, after three days of 24 hour perfume, it was getting a bit much and the amount of pollen these beauties produced was truly amazing.
They had to go. We’d wake up in the middle of the night choking and one look from my wife said it all, bye, bye stargazers.
The lily has been around for millennia and dates back more than 3,000 years. It was not until the 1500s that other varieties besides the Madonna lily became known
The Chinese were among the early growers. Lily in Chinese is said to mean “forever in love”. I do like the sound of that as it makes the lily a truly romantic flower. To the Assyrians the lily was a holy flower.
The lily, in Greek poetry, stands for tenderness. The lily has been said to be the voice of the muse and there is a Greek myth that tells us how the lily was born from the milk of the goddess Hera. To Christians the lily symbolizes pure love.
If you are owned by a cat, beware, cats and lilies do not get along as the lily is toxic to our feline companions.
So toxic that a cat will suffer if even a small amount is consumed so if you have cats, no lilies.
Lilies are reputed to have medicinal properties for humans.
Lilies are a good container plant and thus ideal for a patio or small space garden. For best results, plant single large bulbs (10-12cm/4-5in diameter) in 20-23cm (8-9in) pots, or you can plant three to four smaller bulbs (5-8cm/2-3in diameter) in 23-25cm (9-10in) pots. Be sure to allow 5cm (2in) between bulbs. You will need deep pots to grow lilies.
If you are looking to add curb appeal to yoru property two or three lilies in a stylish container near the front entrance of your house will enhance the visitor’s first impression.
Lilies are from one of three distinct classes and are divided according to color range, period of bloom, hardiness, and orientation of the flowers. The different classes can be combined in the same in the same plot but it is always a good idea to know what you have.
The three varieties are Asiatic hybrid lilies, Oriental hybrid lilies and species lilies. The species lily is the hardiest and is hardy to zone 3.
I’d like to hear your lily stories.
- The Lily Garden - growing lilies
Lilies will bring beauty, color and fragrance to your garden for many years; they only require you to plant them in the right place and provide for their simple needs
- Meaning of Stargazer Lilies: History & Meanings of Stargazer Lilies.
Meaning of Stargazer Lilies by ProFlowers. Read facts, history and meanings of Stargazer Lilies in our Flower Meanings Guide.
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