Friday, July 18, 2008


Although daylilies are wonderful garden plants to me they don't compare to the true liles. Sadly, I have lost my lilies to the nasty red lily beetle that has invaded New England. It did not reach us in New Hampshire until a few years ago but the results have been devasting. I don't use pesticides in my garden and am not diligent enough to save the lilies by constantly picking off the bugs.
But I am beginning to see lilies again in local gardens so I think I will order some bulbs for fall planting and give it another try. Perhaps the bugs died off or migrated away after they had destroyed their food supply? I am going to just try a few bulbs and plant them near the front door so I can watch them carefully.
The lilies in this bouquet are asiastic lilies, the easiest lilies to grow. They flower early in the summer in many soft colors. They don't have much scent. The later lilies, the trumpets and the heavenly orientals have the powerful perfumes. I love the oriental lilies, with their gorgeous, exotic good looks and aroma. I can't bring them into the house however because their perfume gives my husband intense headaches.
The second phograph shows some hot pink orientals mixed with some double orange daylilies, not a bouquet for the timid.

Growing lilies
Aside from the horrible red lily beetle, lilies are not hard to grow, though the trumpets will need staking and some of the orientals seem to peter out after the first year much like tulips. Since they can be expensive this is not an endearing habit. For me it is worth it to plant at least a few.
They are planted in the fall at the same time as tulips and daffodils. Now is the time to order!
Lilies, like tulips, are a favorite dinner for the the little animals living under the garden. I usually plant mine wrapped in plastic mesh, the kind that you buy oranges and other produce in. The roots and flower shoots come right through but it is unappetizing to flower predators.

This incredible bridal gown looks like an exotic lily with the beautiful trumpet spread out on the floor. The draping flow and the exquisite hem design take my breath away. The dress is called Medieval Fantasy Couture Reinactment Fairy Dress and it is handmade by Kathleen Crowley of San Francisco. It is made of silk charmeuse but can also be ordered in other fabrics. Truly a fantasy gown.

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