How to Grow Oriental Lilies


Oriental lilies are hybrid varieties of the lilium family and are stately beauties in the flower garden or in a more naturalized setting. These fragrant perennial flowers are hardy in zones 4 to 8 and can grow from 2- to 8-feet tall. Blooming from mid to late summer, oriental lilies come in a variety of colors. One of the best parts about lilies is that, despite that they grow from bulbs, they don't be removed in the fall or stored indoors over the winter.

Planting and Care

Step 1

Bulbs can be planted in the spring or fall. Oriental lilies prefer mostly sun and well-drained fertile soil. Dig a hole 4- to 6-inches deep. Add manure, compost or peat moss to the soil, mix well. Place the bulbs in the soil, spacing them about 12 inches apart. Cover with soil and water generously.

Step 2

Once planted, spread mulch, such as wood chips, bark mulch or compost around the lilies to keep in moisture. Spread to a depth of about an inch.

Step 3

During periods of drought or dry spells, water the lilies to keep them moist. Do not over water or the bulbs will rot.

Step 4

Due to their height, oriental lilies may need to be staked to keep them from falling over. Just put a stake or thick stick into the ground near the base of the lily for support.

Step 5

To remove spent flowers, deadhead these by cutting the stem just below the flower. In the fall, after the leaves die, cut the plants back just above the ground to mark their place in the garden for next season.

Things You'll Need

  • Trowel or shovel
  • Lily bulbs
  • Compost, manure or other organic material
  • Mulch
  • Water


  • New Complete Guide to Gardening; Susan Roth, 1997
  • Pick the Right Plant; Time-Life Books, 1998
  • How to Grow Lilies

Who Can Help

  • To Purchase Oriental Lily Bulbs
Keywords: oriental lilies, growing oriental lilies, planting oriental lilies

About this Author

Sonia Acone is a full-time freelance writer in northeast Pennsylvania. She has been published by The Wild Rose Press and is currently writing children's picture books, as well as online content and book reviews for the Picnic She holds a bachelor's degree in English and professional writing.