Easter Lilies

Keep your favorite seasonal flower looking good on the table or in the yard
Free Range Stock/Chance Agrella
Easter lilies are a symbol of the season.

Someone gives you an Easter lily as a springtime gift, or you purchase one to support your church or community organization. Then what? We consulted our Extension Master Gardeners for some tips on caring for these plants. Check out our highlights below and learn more here.

  • Start with a good plant. If you're selecting one from a nursery or garden center, look for deep, green leaves and unopened buds that will open in the coming days.
  • Lilies like indirect, natural sunlight and cooler temperatures, about 60 or 65 degrees during the day.
  • Don't place your Easter lily near drafts or heat vents, which will dry out the soil.
  • Keep the plant thoroughly watered and allow it to drain. Remove it from foil coverings, so it doesn't sit in excess water.
  • Once all of the flowers have faded and the safe planting date has been reached (to avoid a late frost), plant the lily outside.
  • A well-drained, raised bed in a sunny location is ideal.
  • Plant the lily bulbs four to six inches apart and six inches deep, from the base of the bulb to the top of the surface.
  • Mulch or pine straw helps to retain moisture and discourage weeds.
  • In the fall, the lily stalks will turn yellow. Cut them off even with the ground. The stalks are easy to pull out completely once they are dry.
  • Mulch heavily for the winter and then remove the additional layer in the spring to make way for the new shoots.
  • Lilies are forced to flower in greenhouses during the Easter season, but the plant will flower again naturally the next June or July.
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