How to Prune an Asiatic Lily


Hardy Asiatic lilies add exotic flowers to a garden. Available in shades from white to deep red, these lilies require minimal care to thrive. Unlike other members of the lily family, they do not require staking to stay upright, though they require some pruning. Pruning the Asiatic lilies encourages them to set more flower bulbs while also keeping a garden neat and attractive. These plants do not require extensive trims. Instead, they require minor clean up and deadheading.

Step 1

Cut off the flowers once they begin to wither and die. Snip them off ¼ to ½ inch beneath the flower head with a pair of clean garden shears.

Step 2

Trim off any damaged or dead leaves from the plants to keep the bed looking neat. Cut them off evenly at the base of the leaf with shears.

Step 3

Leave the foliage and stems in place until the plant begins to die back in the fall. Cut off the remaining yellowed leaves at the base once they are completely wilted. Leave green foliage in place, as the lily needs this foliage to replenish its nutrient stores.

Step 4

Dispose of all removed plant material by placing it in the garbage or in a compost pile. Avoid leaving the old plant matter in the garden bed, as this may become a breading ground for disease.

Tips and Warnings

  • Botrytis blight is the primary disease that breeds in old plant matter in lily beds. The disease may be difficult to eradicate once it becomes established, so disposing off all old and removed plant matter is the best prevention.

Things You'll Need

  • Shears


  • University of Minnesota Extension: Selecting Lilies for Your Garden
Keywords: pruning Asiatic lilies, deadheading a lily, lily plant care

About this Author

Jenny Harrington has been a freelance writer since 2006. Her published articles have appeared in various print and online publications, including the "Dollar Stretcher." Previously, she owned her own business, selling handmade items online, wholesale and at crafts fairs. Harrington's specialties include small business information, crafting, decorating and gardening.