The Easter Lily plant or Lilium longiflorum is a plant native to the Ryukyu Islands of Japan and Taiwan and before the start of the Second World War all of our bulbs came from there. After 1941 commercial production of Easter Lily bulbs shifted to the United States. Ten farms situated along the California/Oregon coast today produce almost all the Easter Lily bulbs. The bulbs are picked in the fall and then shipped to greenhouses around the country. The commercial greenhouses plant them in pots and force them to bloom in time for Easter. The Easter Lily Plant is the fourth most popular potted flowering plant, behind the poinsettia, mum, and azalea. This is amazing when you realize that poinsettias are sold for around six weeks, mums & azaleas all year, and Easter Lily plants for only two weeks. Easter Lily plants produce a number of trumpet shaped, white, fragrant, outward facing flowers that are said to represent “purity, virtue, innocence, hope, and life. According to legend, Lilies grew where Jesus’ sweat fell to the ground during his final hours on the Cross. Churches are filled with Easter Lily Plants during Easter to commemorate the resurrection of Jesus. When buying an Easter Lily select a medium sized compact plant that has numerous dark green leaves down to the soil line and flowers in different stages of opening. There should be just one or two partially open blooms, and three or four plump unopened buds. That way you’ll have flowers opening and lasting for several days. These plants are considered poisonous and should be kept away from pets and children. Read more about common houseplants that are poisonous in my book Don’t Feed Me to Your Cat: A Guide to Poisonous Houseplants.
Cut an Easter Lily Plant back to the soil level once the leaves have turned yellow. Cover the lily Plant Bulbs with mulch to protect them during the winter. In the spring, when the danger of frost has passed, remove the mulch so the new Easter Lily plant sprouts can grow.
You should plant Easter Lily Plant Bulbs about 6″ (15cm) deep and about a foot (30cm) apart. The soil for an Easter Lily Plant should be rich in organic material and be loose enough to drain easily.
Easter Lily Plant Bulbs don’t go dormant so you should never store them. Once the flowers of an Eater Lily Plant die, put your Easter Lily Plant in a bright location until all danger of frost has passed, then plant it outside.