Lilies are one of summer’s loveliest flowers. Prolific bloomers with colorful trumpet-shaped blooms, lilies are easy to grow and many bloom from early summer through late fall. Although lilies love sunny exposures, they will also bloom nicely in partly shaded areas of your garden. A bright, sunny flower, lilies come in a profusion of colors, mostly in shades of yellow, orange, red and white. There are several popular lily varieties:
- The fragrant Asiatic Lily (Lilium) grows on long, regal, well-leafed stems topped with a quartet of large trumpet-shaped blooms. Asiatic Lilies make lovely cut flowers and are beautiful against a hedge or fence or in large, colorful groupings.
- The Canna Lily (Canna) is the largest flower in the lily family. It puts forth giant majestic spikes with large, fleshy leaves topped by a showy frill of giant blooms. A row of Canna Lilies makes an elegant natural border to delineate a garden area.
- The delicate Calla Lily (Zantedeschia) has a beautiful pitcher-shaped flower with a thick, prominent yellow stamen. The plant grows in low, rounded clumps, the flowers seeming to float atop deep green leaves.
- Hemerocallis Daylily (Hemerocallis) is another low-growing lily that grows in a clumping formation. Daylilies have long thin leaves and bright, trumpet-shaped flowers. They look like junior versions of the ubiquitous wild orange lilies that grow along country roadsides. Daylilies make wonderful border and edging plants and add a bright touch of color in front of shrubs.
Potted Easter lilies (Lilium), a variety of Asiatic Lily, can be planted in the garden after they have finished blooming. Set aside in the garage or basement and allow foliage to die back until it is brown and papery. Trim off dead foliage about an inch about the bulb. Plant, tip side up, 6 inches underground, measuring from the top, or tip, of the bulb.