How to Replant Lily Bulbs


Lilies are beautiful flowers that bloom in the spring. They have hardy bulbous root systems that can survive underground during the winter months. Every few years when your garden gets overcrowded, you may need to dig up your lilies to separate the bulbs and then replant them. You may also need to replant your lilies if they are not thriving in their current planting bed. Whatever the reason for replanting your lilies, you should plant exposed bulbs as soon as possible.

Step 1

Dig up your existing lilies. Leave the foliage on if they are still green. However, if the foliage is yellowish brown, cut them back so they are only a few inches above the ground. Generally, lily bulbs are about 4 to 6 inches below the soil. Dig a couple inches out from the center of the plant and pull down on the shovel's handle to lift the bulbs out of the soil. You will probably notice many bulbs under the one plant. This is because lilies multiply. This is a good time to separate them with your hands and replant each bulb individually.

Step 2

Choose an area that is in full sun or partial shade. As a rule, lilies should receive at least a half day's amount of sun.

Step 3

Check to make sure the soil is well draining. Dig a hole that is 2 feet deep and fill it with water. If after 24 hours water remains, you need to amend your soil. To amend your soil, till the first foot of soil and then mix in about 3 or 4 inches of organic matter such as compost or peat moss.

Step 4

Plant your lilies so the tips are 4 to 6 inches from the top of the soil. Plant multiple bulbs about 6 inches apart.

Step 5

Push down on the soil with your hands or feet to remove any air pockets. Then, water the planting site well. Once the water seeps in, push down on the soil again.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Organic matter
  • Water


Keywords: replant lilies, plant lily, plant bulbs

About this Author

Melissa Lewis is a former elementary classroom teacher and media specialist. She has also written for various online publications. Lewis holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.