Plant Pots of Perfume
The epitome of high summer, sweetly scented lilies set by a front or back door will greet you with their perfume as you come and go, but keep your distance because their pollen stains clothing. The most cost-effective way to grow them is to plant fresh bulbs in early spring.
- lily bulbs
- deep container
- broken clay pot pieces
- well-draining, multipurpose potting mix
Choose the following species for scent:
Regal lily, white
Rubrum Japanese lily (L. speciosum var. rubrum)
Oriental hybrids, such as 'Star Gazer', 'Tiger Woods' and 'Arabian Red'
Prepare the Pot
In spring, buy fresh lily bulbs and choose a deep container; most lilies are planted at a depth of 6 to 8 inches. Cover the drainage hole with broken pot pieces and then add a layer of multipurpose potting mix.
Plant the Bulbs
Lay the bulbs on their sides. Positioning the bulbs like this allows water to drain out of the bulb scales, rather than collecting and rotting the bulbs.
Top Up the Container
Cover the bulbs and top up the container to about 2 inches below the rim with potting soil. Place your pots on "feet" in a sheltered spot and move them into the sun as soon as the shoots appear.
Water every couple of days, and apply a tomato fertilizer to your lily pots every week during the summer. Keep in a sheltered area during winter, and in spring, renew the top 2 inches of compost. Lily beetle is their main pest. Look out for these bright red beetles and pick them off as soon as you see them.