How To Plant Your Easter Lily


With the Easter Holiday you might be gifted an Easter lily this weekend.  While it makes a beautiful addition to indoor decorations this time of the year, you don’t have to throw it out when it starts to fade.  If fact, you can plant it outside to enjoy for years to come.

In preparation for planting your lily outdoors, it is a good idea 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.

Planting Your Easter Lily In Your Garden

  1. Set the entire pot and plant into the soil until all the foliage has died back.  This usually takes a month or so.
  2. Remove the old foliage and carefully place the bulb into the soil, making sure to loosen the root system slightly.
  3. Plant the bulb in the soil a little deeper than it was in its container, approximately six inches below the soil's surface.
  4. Spread the roots to make sure there are no air pockets, and cover the bulb with soil and mulch.
  5. Finally, cut the stems back to the ground and water thoroughly.
  6. As winter approaches, feed the soil on a monthly basis with a fertilizer such as Espoma Bulb Tone or a time-release fertilizer like Jack's ClassiCote.
  7. Apply a few more inches of mulch for insulation during the winter then remove the mulch as the weather begins to warm again in the spring.


Lilies grown in cooler zones should be dug up in the fall and kept indoors until spring, or planted at least eight inches deep with heavier mulch.  Here in the Mid-Ohio Valley we’re on the edge of the survivable range for Easter lilies.  Most people have luck planting them next to buildings where they get some reflected warmth from the sun, but there’s always a risk if we have an especially cold winter.

Don't expect to see your lilies again on Easter! If you are lucky, the Easter lilies might produce a second bloom in September; however, most often they wait until the following June or July which is their natural blooming period.