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Lilium - Growing Guide
Growing Lilium candidum
Commonly known as ‘Madonna Lily’
This lily often causes confusion and questions from gardeners because it has a characteristic shared with no other lily species or cultivar. It produces bright green spiralled basal leaves in the autumn and over winter. As such it is a bulb which needs to be planted in pots or in the garden when briefly dormant after flowering in late summer or early autumn. It will then quickly reshoot again and remain evergreen until flowering finishes in midsummer.
L. candidum produces racemes of five to twenty sweetly scented broad trumpet shaped flowers in mid summer. These are 2-3in long and pure white with yellowish bases and prominent yellow anthers.
This is a Mediterranean species which does best in neutral to alkaline soil but is perfectly happy growing in pots in a peat based compost.
Every other lily dies down to ground level for the winter after flowering. This one does not!
Planting Lily Bulbs
Lilies thrive in containers and can be planted still, 6”-8” deep about 5 bulbs per 8”-10” pot. According to the variety these can be stood outside and later brought on to the patio or terrace or placed amongst other plants in the garden.