Planting Lilies in Pots

This is the time of the year to plant Lilies in containers. Almost all Lilies grow well in containers, and a really good way to display them if you don’t have a garden. Choose your bulbs for the space you have available. If you have a lot of space you could choose the giant varieties or tight for space choose the dwarfer types!

Preparing the container:

Containers can be anything from plastic to earthenware pots. Planting Lilies in plastic pots means you can add them to a spare place in a border. Earthenware pots clearly are more permanent.

Clay pots need drainage so add an inch of crocks (broken pots) or shingle to the bottom of the pot. Plastic pots usually have enough drainage holes.


Planting density & depth:

Plant three to four smaller bulbs 2-3in diameter into 9-10in diameter containers. Allow 2in between bulbs and use only deep containers. Half fill the pot with a good compost. John Innes No3 being the best (in my opinion!) Lilies are hungry so always add a slow release fertilizer to the compost.

Planting Lillies

Finally fill up the container but leave an inch from the rim of the container to allow for enough water. Don’t forget to add a label.

Add label


Make sure the compost is moist at all times, but not wet. Feed with a high potassium liquid fertiliser such as tomato feed every fortnight during summer.

Lilies can be grown on in the same pot for years providing that they are well fed and watered.

In the south of England Lilies can be left outside in their pots.

After a few years though they will need re-potting. This can be done just after flowering in the autumn or in the spring but be careful to avoid knocking off the new shoots.


Lily Beetle is a major problem. Squash the beetles as soon as they are seen!

Lily Beetle close up




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1 Response to Planting Lilies in Pots

  1. Pingback: Phoenix FM – Planting Lilies in Pots

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