Western Landscapes Love Madonna the Lily


Although most lilies can be transplanted in September, it is desirable to plant Madonna lily bulbs in August. Madonna lilies start rooting at once and develop a small rosette of leaves before winter sets in, and these remain green throughout the winter. Unlike other lilies, the Madonna lily should be planted shallow. The bulb can be planted with the top of the bulb placed just underneath the soil, or somewhat deeper, but usually no more than two inches deep.

The Madonna lily is one of the few that grow well even in hot, dry weather. It is one of the few lilies that can stand a short period of warm, dry storage. Bulbs of other lily species must be treated as living things and must not be permitted to dry out at any time during the transplanting process. The shorter the time between digging and replanting, the better. That is why it is good to buy lilies from a reliable sources or lily specialist. They will ensure that the bulbs are carefully wrapped, so they do not dry out in transit, and will reach you in the quickest time possible.

August is a good time for transplanting the Oriental poppy. Roots are fully dormant at this time and may be mistaken for dead. Divisions or root cuttings may be used in propagating the plant. Plant the division or cutting up right so that the crown or top of the cutting is about three inches below the ground surface.

Secure good root cuttings from mature roots of tough indoor plants. A cutting from six to eight inches in length should grow sufficiently to produce blooms the following year. In transplanting, firm the soil well around the roots. A light mulching with clean straw or marsh hay will protect the young plants from frost heaving during the winter. Water just enough to settle the soil. Overwatering these roots or crowns can cause rot. Sometimes a plant may fail to send up shoots during one season. Do not give up this plant for dead, for a rot may have started at the crown level, and the plant will often renew itself by sending up new shoots from healthy root tissue at a lower level.

A large number of horticultural varieties are available in colors ranging from deep red, medium red through salmon pink, medium pink, light pink to common orange color. Unusual shades of burgundy and mahogany are also available. The Oriental poppies are hardy throughout the west region.

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