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Lilies are a very popular group of plants with fragrant flowers but at what point should you deadhead those flowers and should you even do it in the first place? Do you have to cut them off or can you leave them?
Deadheading lily plants
The process of deadheading is fairly simple. Once you see the flower has faded you can break it off very gently with your hands or you can use a clean pair of secateurs to simply snip it off. Avoid cutting any of the leaves because those are imperative when it comes to storing energy for the winter.
Is deadheading lily plants necessary?
Deadheading refers to the process where you remove spent flowers from a plant. Most of the time people deadhead their flowers to encourage new flowers and prolong the flowering period and this is the case for most plants.
Lilies don’t flower more than once on the same stem in the same year
However, that’s not what happens with lilies. Once the Lily stem has finished blooming, you won’t get any more Blooms from that stem. Cutting off the flowers won’t give the plant room for new flowers. So why do you have to do it?
Improve the appearance
Deadheading lilies is good because it cleans up the overall appearance of your lily plant. If you are growing for the beautiful flowers, having a smattering of spent flowers to detracts from that.
Don’t cut back the foliage
You also want to keep the foliage through the summer to help the plants come back the following spring and given the plants have a finite amount of energy, removing the spent flowers helps your plant focus more on keeping the foliage all year round.
Don’t let them to seed to get bigger better flowers the following year
That said, remember that your Lily flower can be pollinated and if that happens it will shrivel up in order to reproduce by way of a seed pod. If you plan to use the same bulb to produce more lilies the following year, you can’t let this happen. Producing the seed pods requires energy from the plant that would otherwise be allocated to storing carbohydrates in the bulb for next season. If you don’t deadhead, those carbohydrates don’t get stored because the plant can either make the seed head or prepare for next year. It can’t do both. So you have to decide what you plan to do with your plants the following year.
Last update on 2021-07-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API