Do I need to prune the lilies after flowering and dig up the bulbs for the winter?


Lily cannot be called an unpretentious flower that will invariably delight you with abundant flowering from year to year, without requiring special care. This elegant plant has an unpredictable character: for some gardeners, lilies are strewn with fragrant flowers every season, for others, lilies get sick, refuse to bloom, freeze out. This is especially the case for the luxurious Oriental, American and Tubular hybrids, which do not tolerate the Russian winter well.

When to prune lilies, and is there a need for it?

To make these types of lilies feel great, you need to take proper care of them: you must learn to understand well which lilies to dig up when, and how to store the bulbs until spring.

And since lily bulbs are sent for storage without a ground part, beginners may have a natural question: "When to cut lilies for the winter - right after flowering or just before preparing the plants for wintering?"

Lilies continue to store nutrients for the winter throughout the season.

As soon as the last flowers bloom on the lilies, some gardeners have an inextinguishable desire to quickly remove unnecessary stems at the root. The green "Christmas trees" sticking out in the middle of the flower bed are very painful, especially if they are not obscured by the next change of flowering perennials. And even among experienced florists there is sometimes an opinion that lilies should be cut off for the winter. It is not surprising that newcomers are beginning to be overcome with doubts: should the lilies be trimmed after flowering, or can it harm the plants? "

Lily transplant video

Unlike tulips, the ground part of which quickly dies off after flowering, lilies continue to store nutrients for the winter throughout the season. Lily stems are essential for the process of photosynthesis: Imagine how an onion bulb will grow if its growing green feathers are constantly pinched off? The same thing happens with lilies - pruning deprives the plant of the ability to grow the bulb to the required size and prepare for the next season.

What, then, to do with faded lilies? You will need minimal intervention: the flower petals will fly around by themselves, all you have to do is cut the seed pods, and the stems with leaves will die off naturally in September, then they can be completely removed or pruned at a height of 15 cm above the ground.

Pruning deprives the plant of the ability to grow the bulb to the required size and prepare for the next season.

In the case when lilies have to be cut for a bouquet (after all, lilies are cut flowers), you should choose those plants on which there are at least five buds - the bulb of such lilies has already reached large sizes. Just do not cut the stem to the root, allow the bulb to recover.

Do I need to dig up lilies, how and in what time frame to dig up?

If you first started growing garden lilies, closer to autumn you will have to think about whether it is necessary to dig up lilies so that they do not freeze in winter? As mentioned above, not all types of lilies are able to withstand Russian frosts, so ask your friends gardeners if they dig up lilies for the winter in your region? With mild, not too frosty winters, a shelter of fallen leaves may well be enough for flowers. But if you are afraid of losing your beautiful lilies, it is better to play it safe and store the dug out bulbs in a dry basement or in the refrigerator. It is worth noting that Tubular lilies are dug up for the winter without fail, since they freeze out even under good cover.

The timing of when to dig up lily bulbs is different for each species: Asian and LA hybrids should be dug up in the second decade of August, at the end of August, OT hybrids are dug up, and the bulbs of Oriental hybrids are dug up in early September.

Lily storage video

Digging lilies is as follows:

  • nests of bulbs with pre-cut stems are dug out of the ground;
  • the soil is gently shaken off the bulbs;
  • each bulb is carefully examined for damaged or rotten roots, dry scales;
  • all bulbs are washed with running water;
  • for disinfection, the bulbs are placed in a solution of potassium permanganate or karbofos;
  • after drying in the shade, the bulbs are ready for storage.

Nests of bulbs with pre-cut stems are dug out of the ground

From experienced flower growers, you can hear different points of opinion about whether to prune the lilies, when to dig out the bulbs, and whether it is worth preparing the plants for wintering at all. Be skeptical about advice, use common sense, and be sure to check what you hear. Then you will make much fewer mistakes when growing lilies.

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When to dig up lilies?

Each grower has his own individual vision of whether to dig up lilies or not, and, if so, at what time it should be done. As an autumn preparation, they dig up lily bulbs or equip a special winter cover for them in the form of fallen leaves or spruce branches. There is another opinion that the abundant flowering of lilies is possible without these additional activities of caring flower lovers. Such contradictory actions have their own explanation.


Timing of digging out daffodil bulbs

The daffodil is dug up and planted only when the bulbs begin to press against each other and the flowering weakens. The division of nests and the transplant of daffodils is carried out on average once every 4-5 (up to 6) years.

You can dig up and divide the bulbs even 3 years after planting, if you really need additional planting material. Still, it is better not to disturb the daffodils too often: some varieties may weaken and miss flowering the next year or not even bloom after the last transplant for 2 years in a row, until they are "convinced" that they are left alone.

The timing for digging up and planting daffodils is different from tulips and hyacinths. Why? Because although the foliage of a daffodil dies off after flowering, it does not have a pronounced dormant period. In the bulb, nutrients move, the formation and development of organs takes place.

Dug up bulbs, even without foliage, continue to breathe intensively and lose moisture. Therefore, it is recommended to replant daffodils in a shorter time: dig up later, and plant earlier. And do not store them dug up for 3-4 months, like tulips and hyacinths. It takes 1-2 months from digging to planting daffodils.

Inspect dug up daffodil bulbs before storing.

They dig up the bulbs of daffodils as soon as their foliage turns almost completely yellow (June-July), and they can be planted until the end of September, but the optimal time is the second half of August, since the roots of daffodils grow most actively in September.


Rules for digging lilies

It matters for lilies whether it is necessary to dig up for the winter or not, but also how to do it correctly. The main requirement is not to cut the stem while the bulb is accumulating nutrients in the fall. Leaves are needed for the synthesis of chlorophyll, potassium and phosphorus processing. In this case, the balance of trace elements will be restored, and the bulb will prepare for growth in the spring.

The seeds in the capsules should not be allowed to ripen, as this takes away strength from the underground part. Peduncles are cut off after they have bloomed so that the plant does not waste nutrients on seed growth - lilies are rarely propagated by the sowing method, since varietal characteristics are not preserved.

You need to cut the peduncles correctly - obliquely so that water does not get inside the stem - this leads to rotting tissues and infection of the bulb with a fungus.

The age of the lilies to be dug up must be at least 4 - 5 years old. By this time, they are overgrown with children, they can be multiplied.


Why are lilies dug up?

In lilies, like all herbaceous bulbs wintering in the open field, by the beginning of cold weather, the aerial part completely dies off. In the spring, barely warm days come, young shoots grow.

Lilies are considered easy-to-care perennials, which even a novice grower can grow. But there are a lot of them, and they endure the winter in different ways. Not to mention the fact that the weather conditions in different regions are very different.

In the conditions of central Russia, it is permissible to leave the Daurian, or Pennsylvanian lily for the winter in the ground. It is possible that Asian hybrids, as well as hybrids of OT, AO and LA, will survive our cold. Candidium and royal lily will be able to overwinter under cover. But in order to preserve oriental, tubular or American hybrids, you have to dig up the bulbs for the winter, replanting them in the spring.

Asiatic lily bulbs, like LA hybrids, often have to be dug up in the fall also because they become overgrown with children during the summer months. There are too many of these processes. And in the spring, growing to the mother bulb, they draw out nutrients and water from it. The plant weakens, develops worse and blooms.

Another reason for removing the lily bulbs from the soil is that these plants are constantly self-poisoning. That is, they gradually spoil the land in which they grow. From year to year, the bulbs release substances into it that are harmful to themselves. As a result, the flowers become smaller, and the plants begin to ache. To prevent this from happening, it is necessary to transplant the lilies into fresh soil or completely replace it. It will be possible to return lilies to their original place only after 3-4 years, and some varieties even after five years.


Storage rules

Subject to certain rules, lily bulbs can be stored at home in winter. Bulbs of non-frost-resistant plants are also determined for storage in cases where it was not possible to plant them in the fall immediately after division. In winter, specimens should be stored in dark, cool places with temperatures ranging from 0 to 5 degrees Celsius. Let's consider such places in more detail.

  • Basement. Storing lily bulbs in the basement is allowed if there is good air ventilation and there is no high humidity, otherwise the planting material will be destroyed by mold. To keep the bulbs in the basement, it is better to use products that absorb moisture well, such as sawdust, wood shavings.
  • Garage. This is an ideal place for storing planting material in boxes of sand or peat, provided the room is heated. When the bulbs are hibernated in a cold garage, there is a high probability of freezing. The conditions for storing bulbs in loggias are the same as in garages.
  • Warm loggia. Baby bulbs can be stored until spring in dry, ventilated rooms, even at room temperature, in boxes with a lattice bottom or in gauze bags.
  • Refrigerator. Despite the fact that storing the planting plant in the refrigerator is the most attractive option of all the above, it should be borne in mind that different refrigerators have different degrees of humidity and the bulbs should be stored in them with great care, sprinkling them with wood shavings that absorb excess moisture well.

For storage of lily bulbs, see the next video.


When to dig up and how to store lily bulbs in winter?

So, should you dig up lilies for the winter? Definitely, YES, if these are oriental varieties. Also excavated are American, with tubular and Asian. As for the hybrid varieties "LA", they are dug up for transplanting in any case. It does not depend on the climate in any way. Indeed, if you do not carry out a similar procedure with them, then you can not count on flowering in this case. This is due to the huge number of "babies" that are formed on these varieties. They literally "suck" everything useful from the central bulb, and precisely this does not allow it to fully develop.

If you are growing hybrids of lilies, namely Asian or Pennsylvanian, then you should not dig them up. Also, Candidium, Matragon, Daurian lily and OA hybrids are left for wintering. Tiger lily, which is very common in our country, practically does not notice frosts and their presence on the soil, that is, frosts.

As for the rest of the varieties, they are unlikely to overwinter without shelter. That is why mulching needs to be applied. You can pour sawdust or, if possible, cover the lily bulbs with spruce branches. In addition, another coating is placed on top of the mulch as additional protection.

When to dig up?

Do I need to do this at all, we figured it out. With varieties too. Now let's directly determine the time for this procedure. After all, timeliness in this case is very important.

All terms in this case are approximate, but it is on them that you need to rely on, in order to dig up the lilies in time for the winter and put them away for storage.

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  • Oriental varieties, as well as zoned hybrids that bloom late, need to be dug up in September, best of all in the first half of it.
  • Asian forms (hybrid varieties), and "LA", are dug out a little earlier, namely in August, in the second half of it.
  • The time of digging up hybrids of other varieties, as well as "OA" and "OT" - is also the month of August, but after 2 numbers.

The time when you need to take up a shovel and go dig up your lilies can be determined by yourself. If the above-ground part of your lilies has turned yellow all, as a whole, then this time has come. It is quite possible that your lilies still "hold" and do not turn yellow, then we are waiting for September 20, and you can safely dig out any varieties. The same fully applies to hybrids. This should only be done if you have chosen your home to store these bulbs. But, if you do not plan to store them, but do it only for subsequent planting, then you should not do this later than September 10th. If you plant them later than this date, the bulbs will not have time to take root well, and you will simply destroy them. After all, they will not survive the frost if the snow does not cover them enough.

Of course, it all depends on you. You may not want to dig up your lilies at all for the winter. But, it is better to dig everything up, and any of their varieties. So, you have the opportunity to work on improving the planting material. This is very important in this case, because it is this kind of work that ultimately gives the good flowering that occurs on the lilies every year. That is why, for the winter, all experienced flower growers always dig up lilies. Further, there is time to sort and put them in storage, in anticipation of the next season.

Digging up the lilies correctly. Highlights of technology

The most convenient way to dig up the bulbs is with a pitchfork. This tool is safer and gives you greater assurance that you will not damage the bulbs. When digging up, the bulbs must be removed to the surface, together with a clod of earth. At the same time, the flower itself is taken by its stem in order to shake off the ground and see if there are "children" on it.

Next, the stems will need to be cut. Step back 5 centimeters from the bulb itself, and at this level, cut off the main stem. After that, the roots, that is, the bulbs themselves, must be rinsed. This is usually done directly from the hose.

During storage, large roots should not be left. They need to be pruned. It is enough to leave 5 centimeters long roots.

Now all the bulbs (no exceptions are made here) are placed in a basin, where the karbofos solution is poured. Such a solution must be poured always warm. Or it is replaced with a weak solution of potassium permanganate. In any of these formulations, the bulbs need to be held for 40 minutes.After the completion of such "water procedures", the bulbs are rolled in ash or charcoal. Coal will need to be crushed beforehand.

The bulbs are calibrated and sent to dry in a dark place, where it must also be cool.

Now all the bulbs need to be inspected and sorted again. Bulbs that are noticeably larger than others can be safely set aside to be planted next year. Small onions and babies, you will need to grow more. With such growing, when buds appear, they must be removed all. Of course, there is no talk of flowering this year.

How to store bulbs?

Containers are good for this. Plastic is fine in this case. But, be sure to have a lid for good storage. Bulbs in such containers are usually placed on sawdust. It is quite possible to replace them with wood shavings. The layer is poured 5 centimeters. Sawdust must also be sprayed with water. Only then can the bulbs themselves be laid. Now, you need to cover them from above. This is done again with sawdust, moss, or all the same wood shavings. Now the layer is already poured thicker, namely 10 centimeters. It is also sprayed with water. Now, the container can be safely closed. But, in this case, the lid needs to be pierced a couple of times. There is no need to make large holes. Air will pass to the bulbs and so.

Further, the containers themselves are already taken to the basement. No basement, then make room for lilies in your fridge. There they can safely lie with you until spring.

But in this video you will be shown several options for storing lily bulbs. Look, after all, when you dig them up, you also need to save them.


Watch the video: DONT dig up your dahlias this winter - heres what to do instead


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