Experiment: Easter Lily Re-blooms in August
About a month after Easter, someone at work was getting rid of a fading Easter Lily. She was going to throw it away, which isn’t a bad option for an inexpensive plant that has served its purpose. Instead, she offered it to me for my garden (thanks Christine). I’d never planted an Easter Lily outside, so I wasn’t sure how that would work out, especially since we were still having occasional frost at night. I planted it in a protected area near the patio, next to a climbing rose-bush. Then I forgot about the experiment.
Several month later I noticed that there was a shoot of new growth coming up where I had planted the lily. Eventually it developed two buds and it bloomed today! A welcome surprise on a blazing hot day in August (didn’t I write a week or two ago about the cool air in the evening — wasn’t any cool air last night!).
I’m not a house plant person (although people assume gardeners are) but I do on occasion buy a seasonal plant for my home — Poinsettias, Easter Lilies, Hyacinths or Tulips, miniature Roses, Mums. Depending the plant and the season, after they have served their purpose indoors, these can be put outside to see if they will root and grow. Forget Poinsettias in Colorado, but I suppose if you live somewhere balmy year-round you could try. Sometimes bulbs will come back again the next year, but the greenhouse forcing process takes a lot of their energy, so it’s best to stick them in an empty spot and hope for the best but don’t count on them for a major contribution to the garden.
I’ve had the best luck with miniature roses. The little bushes that are about $5 in the grocery store make a lovely gift and cheer up your table for desk for several weeks. Keep them slightly moist and when they start looking tired in the pot, transplant them into the garden. I have some miniature roses I’ve had for years. A few have died, but that’s ok, they served their purpose, much like a cut bouquet of flowers.
Chrysanthemums are a mixed bag for indoor blooming and then planting outside. The ones that are forced often don’t have great root systems, but it’s worth a try. Since they are normally a fall houseplant gift, depending on the weather, they may not have time to root in before a hard freeze.
I’m curious what will happen to my Easter Lily next year. If it blooms again, it will most likely bloom in mid-summer when the other lilies are blooming, but if not, at least it is adding interest to my patio in mid-August. Experiment in your garden and enjoy some surprises.