What is a Tree Lily?
The Ultimate Quick Guide to Tree Lilies
By Hannah Miller at DIY Gardening
Lilies are beautiful garden plants, and the tree variety will make an impact whether grown in a container or in a border.
Tall and hardy, each plant can produce dozens of large trumpet blooms.
Tree lilies aren’t actually trees but they have taken this species to a new height – up to 2.5 metres to be precise, but it will take up to 3 years to reach this potential.
Everything about tree lilies is bigger; large bulbs up to 18cm, thick 5cm stems and up to 30 20cm trumpet blooms.
Buy Tree Lilies Online
You can buy tree lily bulbs online:
- Fast delivery.
- 9 or 18 bulbs per pack.
- Plant up to spring.
- Flowers in July and August.
- Grows up to 2.5 metres tall.
- Up to 30 blooms per plant.
Also Known As:
When to Plant Tree Lily Bulbs
Plant out as soon as the bulbs arrive provided the soil is neither frozen nor waterlogged. Otherwise store the bulbs in a dark, cool location and plant out by late March.
The best location for tree lilies is in full or partial sun in soil that’s well-drained. If possible, choose a spot where the roots are in the shade and the blooms will be in the sun.
Depth and Spacings
As a general rule of thumb, insert the bulbs to a depth 3 times their height.
The bulbs can be spaced 20cm to 40cm apart but closer in containers.
Support and Stakes
Tree lily stems are around 5cm thick so are sturdy enough to support the weight of the foliage and blooms until the plant reaches 1.5metres in height, after which it will benefit from some support in the form of staking. This is optional but recommended.
Tree lilies grown in windy, exposed locations should always be staked for support.
Water, Fertiliser and Soil
Keep the soil moist but not waterlogged and apply a general fertiliser during the growing season. The best soil is fertile but free-draining.
Tree lilies are herbaceous perennials that die back to ground level each year. The bulbs then sprout again in the spring.
As winter-hardy plants, they do not require lifting or storing for the winter but, in particularly cold climates, may benefit from a top layer of insulating mulch.
As with all bulbs, the foliage and stems send energy to the bulb, even after flowering, and this is needed to ensure the bulb survives the winter and performs well the following year.
Tree Lily Summary
Tree lilies are an excellent addition to any garden where vertical interest is required.
Grow in pots or in borders where they can grow up to 2.5 metres.
Expect up to 30 large trumpet blooms from this low maintenance plant that comes back year after year.
More From Hannah Miller:
This quick guide to growing tree lilies was created by Hannah Miller, is one of many plant growing guides here and was last updated in October 2021.
Hannah is a keen amateur gardener, mother and a former NHS administrator.
She enjoys gardening as much as she cares about the environment and likes to share her knowledge with others.
Hannah is a keen photographer, and you’ll find hundreds of her photos throughout this site. She also contributes to our blog; check out her latest posts here.
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