- Dividing Lily Plants: Learn When And How To Transplant Lilies
- Dividing Lily Plants
- When to Move Lilies
- How to Transplant Lilies
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- Yard and Garden: Planting and Dividing Lilies in Fall
- Gardening Answers Knowledgebase
- Success With Tiger Lily Flower Starts With Good Soil Preparation
- Tiger Lily Flower Appearance
- Plant Tiger Lily Bulbs In Late Fall Or Very Early Spring
- Trim Spent Blossoms Diligently
- Divide & Feed In Autumn
- Mulch In Springtime
- When and How To Plant Tiger Lily Seeds?
- Pests And Diseases On Tiger Lilies
- Why Choose Tiger Lilies?
- Where Does The Tiger Lily Grow Wild?
- Transplanting Competing Lily Plants
Dividing Lily Plants: Learn When And How To Transplant Lilies
Lilies are a symbol of peace and traditionally represent chastity, virtue, devotion and friendship, depending upon the color. No matter the meaning, lilies are cherished gift flowers and power houses of the perennial garden. Flower growers know that lilies in the garden naturalize and produce more and more blooms season after season. The secret is dividing lily plants. Unlike a lot of other bulbs, however, lilies never go completely dormant, so lily transplanting can be a little tricky. Learn the tips on how to transplant lilies and divide them for even more of these exotic looking blooms.
Dividing Lily Plants
It doesn’t matter if they are Asiatic or Oriental; lilies bring serenity and beauty to any landscape. Most bulb flowers undergo a process called naturalization over time. This is when the plant produces more bulbs which grow and mature under the soil. The original bulbs will slowly fizzle out and either stop producing blooms or grow smaller flowers.
As the newly formed bulbs get older, they will become the center of the action. These need to be lifted and transplanted to make new stands of vigorous blooms. In most zones, you can lift the bulbs and separate them, then instantly plant them to overwinter in the ground. This is recommended, as the bulbs never go completely dormant and it’s not easy to keep them “fresh” all winter long. Only gardeners in the coldest climes will need to store their bulbs indoors and “fool” them with a chilling period before planting outdoors in spring.
When to Move Lilies
Lilies produce from bulbs and need to be divided and transplanted in the fall for the best results. Experts say late September or early October is when to move lilies. Immediately start transplanting lily bulbs once they have been lifted.
The best time to transplant lilies will depend on your zone. Some plants will last later into the season and should be allowed to remain with foliage intact to the last possible date before frost. This way the plant can gather energy to store in the bulb for massive blooms.
A few weeks before your local date of your first frost, you should have division of lilies on your list of fall chores. This doesn’t have to be done every year, but you should undertake the task every 2 to 3 years for the best lily stands. If you are in doubt as to the best time to transplant lilies, dig them up when the foliage starts to yellow and proceed to separate and replant them.
How to Transplant Lilies
Transplanting lilies is easy. Cut stems to 5 or 6 inches (13-15 cm.) above the ground. Dig several inches around the patch of plants and 12 inches (30 cm.) down. This will ensure that you get all the bulbs without damaging them with your spade or garden fork.
Gently separate each bulb and its attending bulblets, which are tinier versions of a bulb. At this time you can cut the stem to just above the lily bulb. Work quickly so your bulbs do not dry out. The best time of day is morning when temperatures are cooler and soil and air contains some moisture.
Plant the larger bulbs under 5 to 6 inches (13-15 cm.) of soil, while the baby bulblets should be planted under just a few inches of soil. Apply organic material several inches over the planting zone to insulate the bulbs for winter.
Lilies look best in clumps. To achieve the effect, plant bulbs in groups of 3 or more. Space the bulbs 8 to 12 inches (20-30 cm.) apart. In spring, remove the mulch material as soon as you see shoots poking through.
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Q: I hope you can tell me why my orÂange tiger lilÂies looked rathÂer sad this year. Most of the stalks only had one flower to them. I planted the bulbs probÂably 10 years ago, and wonÂder if their lifespan has come to an end. Could I add a ferÂtilÂizÂer in spring, and what type? Also, why would the odd AsiatÂic lily bulb bloom wonÂderÂfulÂly the first year and fade out in qualÂity and colÂour the rest of the years?
A: Tiger lilÂies (Lilium tigrinum) need to be dug out every few years and have their bulbs divÂidÂed. This is esÂpeÂcialÂly true if the plants are showÂing signs of slowing down, as yours are. The best time to do this is beÂtween fall dorÂmancy and spring. Wait until the plants turn yelÂlow and die down beÂfore digÂging. Tiger lilÂies have a bulb that looks like a head of garÂlic, so divÂision is simÂple. Just break off the smaller bulbs from the cenÂtral bulb.
You can then plant the bulblets to creÂate new and re-eÂnerÂgized plants. The smaller bulbs may take up to two years beÂfore they bloom, so plant them in and among your esÂtabÂlished and fully formed bulbs to avoid a huge bare patch in the garden. If you have to reÂplant all of yours, your tiger lily patch will be a litÂtle bare of flowers for a while. FerÂtilÂize the plants when they emerge with a balÂanced ferÂtilÂizÂer.
There could be a numÂber of reaÂsons for the lack of proÂducÂtion:
â You may have poor soil in need of orÂganÂic matÂter. Add comÂpost in and around the botÂtom of plants. FerÂtilÂize in the spring with 10-10-10 or 20-20-20 or 15-30-15. ConÂtinue to ferÂtilÂize twice a month through AuÂgust.
â They may be dry. LilÂies do not like to dry out. Moist but not wet is the rule.
â LilÂies preÂfer to have their roots cool, so havÂing lower plantÂings that shade their roots can be an adÂvanÂtage.
Q: I planted sevÂerÂal giant sunÂflowers last spring. The heads all ripÂened and were ready to eat, but the birds were not inÂterÂestÂed. Maybe it is because all the heads were looking down at the ground and there was no place for the birds to perch. Is there anyÂthing I can do to make them more atÂtractÂive and availÂable to the birds in winÂter?
A: The heads faÂcing down sounds like the problem. My grandÂfather would cut the heads of sunÂflowers off and place them face up on the top of a fence or any high spot. But if your fence is the type that can acÂcomÂmoÂdate a bird-loving cat, conÂsidÂer tying a string around the heads inÂstead, and hangÂing them right side up from a tree.
Q: Can all outÂdoor grassÂes (perÂenÂnial) be brought inÂside, and is there a betÂter time to bring them in so they donât go into shock from the temÂperÂature change?
A: Yes, you can bring grassÂes inÂdoors. Youâre too late for this year, as the best time to do this would be beÂfore the first killÂing frost, which usuÂalÂly brings on the winÂter dorÂmancy perÂiod for grassÂes. Next year, if the grassÂes are a bit unÂruly and overÂgrown you can cut them back. The cut can be as drasÂtic as four inchÂes above the soil. Place the grassÂes in a south-faÂcing winÂdow if posÂsible. Water them only when the soil feels dry to the touch.
An alÂternaÂtive methÂod for grassÂes that have beÂcome too large is to divÂide them into smaller plants, pot each plant in its own conÂtainÂer and then bring those inÂdoors. I realÂly like the idea of growÂing these grassÂes inÂdoors, over the winÂter. I have one area in my home where I have a groupÂing of grassÂes of variÂous sizes, heights and colours.
Yard and Garden: Planting and Dividing Lilies in Fall
AMES, Iowa – Lilies make an excellent addition to a spring and summer garden landscape. However, fall is the right time to plant, dig and divide lilies for optimal performance in spring.
Iowa State University Extension and Outreach horticulturists explain what to do now to help lilies reach their full potential. To have additional questions answered, contact the ISU Hortline at 515-294-3108 or [email protected]
What is a good planting site for lilies?
Most lilies perform best in well-drained, slightly acidic soils in full sun. However, Martagon lilies prefer partial shade and neutral to slightly alkaline soils. Good soil drainage is imperative as bulbs may rot in poorly drained, wet soils. Raised beds are a good planting option in poorly drained locations.
When is the best time to plant lilies?
Early fall is an excellent time to plant Asiatic, Oriental and other garden lilies. Plant lily bulbs at a depth equal to three times their diameter. Container-grown lilies also can be planted in spring and summer. Plant container grown lilies at the same depth as in the pot.
When would be a good time to dig and divide lilies?
Early fall is an excellent time to dig and divide Asiatic, Oriental and other garden lilies. Carefully dig up the clump and separate the bulbs. Replant the bulbs immediately. If planting must be delayed, place the bulbs in a plastic bag containing lightly moistened sphagnum peat moss and place the bag in the refrigerator. Plant the bulbs as soon as possible.
Can I plant tiger lilies near Asiatic, Oriental or other garden lilies?
Many lily enthusiasts don’t grow tiger lilies (Lilium tigrinum) because they are often infected with lily mosaic virus. Lily mosaic virus causes little harm to tiger lilies. Often, you can’t tell that they have the disease. However, aphids and other sap-feeding insects may carry the virus from tiger lilies to other types. Many hybrid lilies infected with lily mosaic virus produce distorted foliage that is streaked or mottled. Also, infected plants produce fewer flowers and those flowers that do form are often deformed. Lilies exhibiting lily mosaic virus symptoms should be promptly dug up and discarded.
Gardening Answers Knowledgebase
Search Results for: Lilium (Lily family) | Search the catalog for: Lilium (Lily family)
- Plant Answer Line Questions: 5
- Garden Tips: 1
- Book Reviews: 0
Plant Answer Line Question
Keywords: Lilium (Lily family)
I am trying to discover the common and scientific name for the orange spotted wild lily that looks like an orange tiger lily. It blooms in the forests of the Pacific Northwest in June and early July.
You must be thinking of Tiger Lily, Lilium columbianum (also known as Columbia lily and Oregon lily). Source: Plants of the Pacific Northwest Coast by Pojar and Mackinnon (Lone Pine, 1994).
Click here to see images of Lilium columbianum.
Keywords: Lilium (Lily family), Winter gardening, Bulbs
I was recently given 6 Oriental lily (Lilium) bulbs – bare root. It seems much too cold (late February) to put these in the ground. They are currently naked in the garage, but would it be better to pot them until the ground is workable? I have not raised lilies before, other than daylilies.
Generally, it is good to plant bulbs soon after you get them, but if you need to wait (due to cold weather and unworkable soil), keep the bulbs somewhere cool, and keep them “in moist sand or peat moss until scales plump up and new roots begin to sprout” (Sunset Western Garden Book, edited by Kathleen Norris Brenzel, 2001).
The Gardener’s Guide to Growing Lilies by Michael Jefferson-Brown and Harris Howland (Timber Press, 1995) confirms your thought that it is too cold to plant them out in the garden (I would wait until the threat of freezing temperatures subsides). According to the resource mentioned above, Oriental lilies will do very well in pots, so what you could do is pot them now, and if you decide you would like to move them into the garden when it warms up, you could either put them, pot and all, into the border, or gently remove them from the pot without too much root disturbance, and plant them in the soil.
Keywords: Lilium (Lily family), Bulbs
How do you remove the dead flowers from a Asiatic lily? Do you go to the main stem and cut it there or do you just remove the flower and leave the pod?
Here is what South Dakota State University advises:
“Once all the flowers have dropped their flower petals, it is a good idea to deadhead the stem, by cutting of the flower spike at the base, just above the stem leaves. Keep in mind that the leaves are the most important plant component to allow the lily to come back next year and flower even more than the year before. So, keep those leaves green and healthy all the rest of the summer and fall so they can help to store up food reserves for the winter and next year’s growth and flowering.”
The practice of deadheading the spent flowers (but leaving the foliage as long as it is green) enables the plants to put energy into the bulb. Once the foliage dies back in late fall of early winter, you can cut down the dead stalks.
Keywords: Vegetative propagation, Lilium (Lily family), Bulbs
I have a question about what is the best time of year to transplant and divide Asiatic lily bulbs? Is it fairly easy to identify where the bulb should be divided? Also, someone told me to use a rooting solution on the divided bulbs. Is this necessary? Is late October too late in the fall to divide them?
Most sources say to divide lilies in the fall. You do not need to use a rooting solution on the divided bulbs. Sunset’s Western Garden Book (2001) says the following: “If clumps become too large and crowded, dig, divide and transplant them in spring or fall. If you’re careful, you can lift lily clumps at any time, even when they are in bloom.”
One rationale for lifting them when in bloom is provided in an article from the Wisconsin Regional Lily Society, no longer available online, but excerpted here:
“After three successive years of making this futile pact, I finally concluded that books were wrong! Fall isn’t the time to transplant lilies. It’s a job best done in mid-summer when they’re in full bloom. This eliminates most of the guess work, since at this point, the plants are at their maximum height, making it nearly impossible to make the mistake of planting the tall ones to the front of the border, the short ones at the back. It also affords a crystal-clear picture of concurrent bloomers. In fall, no matter how carefully one does the job, when digging dormant bulbs at least one bold orange always manages to get itself placed directly beside the brightest pink. The clashing colors burn themselves into your retinas nearly as well as flashbulbs-blink quickly and the image reappears!
“The maximum size of the plants in mid-summer is another advantage. When autumnal plants have shrunk to a mere fraction of their former selves, it’s too easy to misjudge your space placement. Who hasn’t heard the disheartening ‘crunch’ of a spade slicing through the most expensive bulb in the bed? How it knows the price, I’ll never know.
“Spring is the only time I’d actually refrain from moving lilies. The delicate new shoot is easily broken, and once gone, the poor bulb has only two options: It will either die or spend an entire year below ground, depleting its energy reserves as it forms a new shoot for the following spring. All the while it’s caught in a perilous game of Russian roulette. Without aboveground parts to warn of its existence, it can never quite be sure when a spade might suddenly come slicing down. Crunch! -The second most expensive bulb gone?
“Certainly no plant will be thrilled at being dug up and moved in full flower, but if it’s kept well watered and blooms are removed, almost any perennial will have recovered fully by the following season. One of the best gardeners I know says that the best time to move any perennial is when you have the time!”
Keywords: Vegetative propagation, Lilium (Lily family)
My Easter lily died, and as I was removing some of the soil I saw a small green bulb (less than an inch long). The tag that came with it said they can grow year round, and I live in Florida where it always stays warm enough. I decided I wanted to try to salvage that bulb and regrow it. Can I safely remove that bulb from the stem of that dying plant and replant it?
I also have recently planted some small Asiatic lilies (which are growing like mad, I planted the bulbs less than a month ago and they are already over 6 inches tall!) and want to be able to do the same when they die. I hope you can help me out, I love lilies and want to be able to keep these going and then add more and more. Thank you!
The Complete Book of Plant Propagation (edited by Charles Heuser; Taunton Press, 1997) gives these instructions for growing on “stem bulblets” like what you see on your Easter lily (Lilium longiflorum):
“Pick off the bulblets carefully, to avoid damage to any small roots that may already have formed. Plant bulblets at twice their own depth in a prepared pot of medium , and mulch with a layer of sand. …Grow on in a cold frame . The following fall, pot up individual bulbs separately, or if growth has been vigorous, set … in the flowering site. …will take 2-5 years to flower.”
The same process should work for your Asiatic lilies (Lilium hybrids), if you have stem bulblets there, or you could try “scaling.” Scaling involves breaking a bulb into individual scales, throwing out any soft or wrinkly ones, and bagging them up in a sand/peat mixture (inflate the bag with air) at 61-77 degrees Fahrenheit for 4-12 weeks. Each scale should sprout bulblets, which you can treat like stem bulblets, except leave them attached to their scale (as long as it is firm) and don’t bury them so deeply while the bulblets are small: 1/4 of sand over the scale bulblets is enough.
Many of the daisy-like flowers such as Rudbeckia, Helenium, Symphyotrichum, and Chrysanthemum will form a mass of flowers that will eventually topple over the edge of the beds. While a cascade of color can be attractive spilling over the edge, it looks very unsightly when you expose the brown bare centers of the plants. It is best to stake these plants as a group or clump. Tall perennials with large flowers like Lilium, Delphinium, Crocosmia, and Dahlia will benefit from individual stakes.
Spectacular towering over the garden in mid-late Summer, this hardy heirloom “pass-along” lily is INDESTRUCTIBLE in the garden, tolerating neglect and poor soil. Within a few years, it makes a grand display of 5-10 strong, 6′ stalks topped with a huge candelabra of radiant, 5” reflexed orange blooms ornamented with black spots – 12-20 blooms per candelabra! One of the few lilies to produce conspicuous bulbils (baby bulbs) in the leaf axils, you can pop these off for sharing; they’ll easily sprout new plants! An incredible performer and attention hound at the back of a mixed bed, in a rock garden or even front and center in your Summer display, it’s probably the EASIEST lily you can grow. Now, there can be a tradeoff to all this vigor: it’s recommended you keep them separated from Oriental and Asian Lilies, as they may carry a virus that can affect more delicate Lilies. Rich soil for optimum performance. Cut back after bloom. Butterflies and wondrous cut flowers! May ship dormant until April.
It’s fun to grow lilies from bulbs, and Tiger Lily flowers (Lilium lancifolium) from the genus Lilium (true lilies) are a particularly striking and dramatic specimen.
Other synonyms of the tiger lily plant include:
- Lilium tigrinum
- Lilium catesbaei
- Pine lily
- Leopard lily
- Lilium columbianum
- Oregon lily
- Wester wood lily
- Chalice-cup lily
- Western red lily
… and more.
The Tiger Lily is very rewarding to grow because with very little preparation and care they yield vibrant and abundant results. Tiger lillies are very hardy (USDA hardiness zones 3 to 9).
In this article, we will discuss the skills and steps necessary to grow and care for Tiger Lilies. Read on to learn more.
Success With Tiger Lily Flower Starts With Good Soil Preparation
Growing Lilium tigrinum is easy as long as you give them a well-drained soil.
Begin with soil that has been thoroughly tilled and loosened to provide your lily bulbs with excellent drainage.
Establish beds of tiger lily bulbs in full sunlight as these lilies are sun-loving flowers.
If you plant Lilium lancifolium in a shaded or partially shaded area, they will tend to lean in the direction of the sunlight.
In full sun, they will grow tall, straight and strong.
Tiger Lily Flower Appearance
So, what is a tiger lily and what does a tiger lily look like?
There are orange tiger lilies, red tiger lilies, and other tiger lily colors.
The tiger lily flower wears orange petals with black spots which suits the summer bulb flowers vibe. The orange black color made it look like the tiger’s skin, a good reason for earning the name tiger lily.
Tiger lilies crossed-bred with Asiatic lilies resulted to hybrid tiger lilies of different colors.
From the black and orange combination, the cross-breeding gave birth to red, yellow, and white lily. Each color holds a slightly different appearance compared to others.
On the other hand, the double tiger lily bears a lot of tepals and no stamens. The stems of this type of lily shoots up to 30 to 48 inches tall and grows in USDA hardiness zones 4 through 9.
The orange day lilies grows along roadsides and ditches, which is why it is called the ditch lily.
This species of lily have different growth habits. It grows from tuberous roots and bears healthy grass-like foliage coming from the base of the lily plant.
Plant Tiger Lily Bulbs In Late Fall Or Very Early Spring
Once you’ve prepared the bed, dig individual holes and plant your bulbs. Dig the holes approximately eight inches apart and about six inches deep.
Place bulbs carefully in the holes with the flat part on the bottom and the pointy part sticking up. Cover them completely with fresh soil and tap it down lightly.
Follow up with a thorough watering. Covering with a few inches of mulch will help protect the bulbs and hold moisture into the ground.
Here’s a quick roundup on lilies shared by the Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier:
Find a sunny, well-drained location in the garden, loosen the soil and plant lily bulbs 6 to 8 inches deep, pointy end up. Handle with some care to avoid losing scales on the bulbs. How simple is that? After blooming, snip off the stems, leaving behind about 1/3 of the stem. Wait until the stems are completely dry before gently tugging them out. Via wcfcourier.com
You may also like:
- The Mexican Tiger Flower (Tigridia)
- Growing The Stargazer Lily Flower
- Eremurus – Foxtail Lily breathtaking in beauty and size, flower spikes 8′ to 10′ feet tall.
Trim Spent Blossoms Diligently
Once your true lilies begin blooming, you’ll have an abundant supply of fresh flowers for creating indoor floral arrangements for your home.
Even if you do not cut flowers for decoration, keep a close eye on your lilies and deadhead old flowers frequently to encourage more blooms.
Divide & Feed In Autumn
In the autumn, your lilies will die back and begin to go dormant. Before winter sets in, you should dig them up, divide them and replant them.
Keep the tiger lily plants away from Asiatic lily and oriental lily. Tiger lilies acquire the mosaic virus quickly. Although it won’t affect them, they can pass it to other lilies planted nearby.
Hybrid lilies affected by the mosaic virus will bear distorted and mottled blooms. You need to take away those infected by the disease to avoid further outbreak.
If you don’t have enough space to plant more lilies, remember that lily bulbs make an excellent gift and the holidays are right around the corner!
Autumn is also the perfect time to amend your soil by adding properly age compost, sand and/or peat moss.
All of these additions help nourish your Tiger Lily bulbs and provide better drainage for the soil. Remember that Tiger Lilies are especially intolerant of soggy conditions.
Mulch In Springtime
Remember to keep your Tiger Lilies well-mulched with organic mulch that will provide them with nutrients throughout the growing season and help hold water into the soil so that they can make the most of available water.
If you use finished garden compost as mulch, it will do double duty as a boost of essential nutrients at the start of the growing season.
When and How To Plant Tiger Lily Seeds?
Tiger lily seeds are contained inside the bulbil, which is a small bulb-like growth that develops after the flower has faded.
If you want to collect these seeds, do not deadhead your Tiger lilies when they finish blooming.
When do tiger lilies bloom?
They bloom at the end of the summer.
Instead, allow the bulbils to form completely. When they are ready to gather, they will be quite dark and will fall off the plant readily when bumped.
- Plant them, directly into your garden soil as soon as you gather them.
- Place them in the refrigerator to stratify them for a month or so before starting them indoors in sterile potting medium.
This video demonstrates how to start Lily bulbils indoors.
Pests And Diseases On Tiger Lilies
In general, tiger lilies encounter few growing issues, but several pests and diseases to be aware of.
Botrytis – a fungal disease caused by excessive moisture and warm temperature. It affects the tiger lily leaves, with the first signs appearing as white spots on the leaves.
Control this disease by removing the spotted leaves. Spray the plant with baking soda mixture. Ensure plants get plenty of air circulation to prevent an outbreak.
Basal Rot – a common fungal disease the “root rot” attacks the bulb through the roots. Early disease symptoms include premature yellowing of foliage caused mostly by warm moist/wet soil.
To prevent its occurrence, provide good drainage and avoid over-watering plants during summer. Remove the infected scales and use a fungicide to treat bulbs.
Blue Mold – Due to high sugar content, mechanical injury or bruises on the bulb can create the penicillin mold. A dusting of a fungicide powder will remove the harmless mold.
Virus Diseases – Spread mainly by aphids. The main virus symptoms display flecking in the leaves or irregular mottling, distorted growth, and reduced plant size.
Control the spread of the virus to other lilies by discarding infected bulbs and scales, and remove affected plants.
First, try killing aphids with a homemade spray or control them using approved synthetic chemical insecticides.
- When To Plant Lily Of The Valley Pips
Why Choose Tiger Lilies?
The Tiger Lily is an old-fashioned, traditional addition to your garden that puts on a grand show and can actually provide you with a bit of privacy since well cared for specimens can grow to be several feet tall.
Surprisingly, Tiger Lilies are also fairly drought tolerant. Although you need to water deeply and regularly (about once a week) during the first growing season. Once established Tiger Lilies do very well on only existing rainfall.
Naturally, you will want to keep a close eye on them and if they begin to show signs of suffering from heat and dryness, give them a deep, slow watering that will last them a week or more.
There are many different types of lilies, and they all grow wonderfully; however, Tiger Lilies are the most hardy. They also produce vast numbers of flowers (as many as 12 per stem) in a wide range of vibrant shades of yellow, gold, orange and red.
Where Does The Tiger Lily Grow Wild?
Tiger lilies originated in the far east. Although they are Asian natives, they have adapted very well to life in the United States and naturalize easily in USDA zones 3-9.
They can be grown in any well-draining soil in partial shade to full sun. Their water needs are low-to-moderate.
Because these plants are so tough and adaptable, many people describe them as “wild tiger lilies.”
They naturalize in woodlands, open spaces, along railroad tracks and in vacant lots in many and varied locations across the US and into Canada.
It is important to understand that there is no American “wild tiger lily”.
There are actually two types of lily called “Tiger Lily”. One is the Day Lily (Hemerocallis fulva), which is not listed as invasive and can be planted in gardens in controlled numbers.
The second is the true Tiger Lily (Lilium lancifolium/Lilium tigrinum). These plants are invasive, so if you plan to plant them, be sure to keep them contained and under control.
Transplanting Competing Lily Plants
I have a bed of tiger lilies and lemon daylilies. The tiger lilies have taken over. Can I dig them now before they really get growing?
Yes. First determine if the tiger lilies are hardy lilies (Lilium lancifolium) or an orange flowered daylily. Daylilies have grass like leaves while the true tiger lily has leaves like an Easter lily. Both are sturdy plants but multiply differently. Dig and divide tiger lilies in the fall. Check the soil for bulbs and bulbils (small pea like structures that start new lilies) as you dig and divide. Make sure you get the small lilies as well as the larger bulbs out of the way of the daylilies. Early spring is the next best time to dig and divide these plants. If the orange flowering plant is truly a daylily, you can dig and divide these plants in spring or late summer for best results or as time allows during the growing season. Dig the plant, divide into smaller pieces and place the divisions throughout the landscape in properly prepared soil. If these are what many gardeners call “ditch lilies” you may want to compost the divisions instead of spreading this aggressive plant throughout the landscape.