Furry Frank’s Flora Facts
I stopped at the mall today on the way home to get an easter gift for my better “half” and I saw all these people buying lilies and hyacinths and colored straws and such as only at Easter. I ran into a friend of mine that I usually only see come Spring, but i can’t seem to find him. Said he’d meet me at the bench. Oh well, he’s some little short guy with green pants. If you see him send; him to me please.
I bet you loved the bright blooms and fragrance of your easter lily. Alas, although the flowers seem to quickly be there and then be gone, you can extend the life of your lily by planting it outdoors.
There are some rules to follow and they are as follows:
⦁ Leave the plant indoors until the last frost.
⦁ Keep your lily plant(s) in a sunny location, but away from direct sunlight, heat or heavy draughts.
⦁ Easter lilies prefer cooler temperatures, usually around 60-65º during the day and 55-60º during the night. Be sure to water your plant if the surface of the soil feels dry; however, beware of drowning your lily.
⦁ Remove the decorative foil and allow the excess water to drain through the soil into a saucer. Empty the saucer regularly to avoid having the lily sit in water.
⦁ Keep in mind that the Easter lily is highly toxic to cats, so chose a location that will keep your pets out of trouble!
In preparation for planting your lily outdoors, it is good to remove the flower heads as they begin to fade to keep the plant from seeding. This will help conserve the plant’s energy for next year’s flowers. Once the blooms have faded and all danger of frost has past find a bright, sunny location in your garden to plant your lily.
If you can placed them in filtered light after they are finished blooming and keep the soil slightly damp. You can start to acclimate them to the outside now and plant them in late April. Work a little balanced fertilizer or fertilizer formulated for bulbs into the soil before planting. Wait until the foliage browns (or at least yellows) and then cut it off at ground level. The hyacinths won’t grow or bloom any more this year, but they should bloom next April outside.
Did you get a small potted hydrangea? Many, if not most, of those are “florist’s hydrangeas,” or ones that aren’t reliably hardy in our winters. Sometimes the plants will survive, but the flower buds freeze out, which eliminates the main reason for growing a hydrangea.
If you want to give it a try and see if the hydrangea survives and blooms, wait until late April or early May and then gradually acclimate the plant to the outdoors. Give it increasing sun and time outside over a 10-day period, then plant it – preferably in a protected spot that gets morning sun and afternoon shade. In the meantime, keep it near a sunny window inside and water it when the soil becomes dry. (Don’t overdo it with the water. No soggy soil!)
Hoped these few tidbits helped you out. Me, I’m gonna hop on the next bus outa here. It’s the busy time of the year.