Set out bulbs to a depth of 6 inches or more – the rule of thumb is to plant to a depth of 3 times their height. (An exception is L. candidum, which is planted in late summer/early fall, 2 inches deep.) Lilies require excellent drainage.

Choose a light, porous, sandy soil, enriched with well-decomposed compost or humus. The ideal situation is one where the plants will receive full sun at the tops but shade at soil level to keep the ground moist; to this end, surround bulbs with a low-growing ground cover or companion plants. Plant 6 to 8 inches apart.


Remove spent flowers before seed can be set. When cutting for indoor displays, take care not to remove more than half the length of the stems, as this will weaken the plant and discourage future flowering. Fertilize lightly every year either after flowering or when growth appears in the spring.


Trumpets and Orientals, Zones 4-8; Asiatics, Zones 3-8