Lily of the valley: how to grow and care in 2023

Lily of the valley is a woodland plant with attractive green leaves and tiny bell-shaped white or pink flowers. Learn how to plant, grow and care for lily of the valley in your garden. Read more in our article.

Lily of the valley: cultivation and care

This is a hardy plant that quickly covers the ground and feels great in the shade. Lily of the valley is a good solution for gardeners who do not want to mow the grass regularly, but want to have a beautiful green garden. Lily of the valley looks great and smells fantastic. What an elegant, low-maintenance alternative to grass!

In addition to the beautiful bell-shaped flowers, the lily of the valley is known for producing a special spring fragrance. Delicate flowers that appear on arching stems in early to mid-spring are accompanied by medium-green foliage that remains lush and glossy throughout the season. Treat yourself to these exquisite plants – they are easy to care for! Learn more about how to plant and grow lilies of the valley with our helpful tips!

Description of the plant

From about 1000 BC, the lily of the valley is one of the fragrant plants that bloom in spring and early summer throughout the northern temperate zone. Lily of the valley is a low-growing, sprawling plant that appears year after year in late spring. The genus Convallaria includes a single species, C. majalis, which is one of the most useful ground cover plants for creating shade.

Lily-of-the-valley flowers are bell-shaped and appear in clusters on one side of a leafless stem and last for about three weeks. The leaves are located at the base of the plant. Delicate white or pale pink flowers have a very delicate aroma.

The stems are covered with tiny drooping white bell-shaped flowers with a sweet fragrance and medium-bright green lanceolate leaves 10 to 20 cm high and 7.5 to 12 cm wide.

Lily of the valley

Features of growing lily of the valley in the garden

This easy-care plant does not require much time to grow. Preferring growth in the shade and moist soil, it is easy to grow a lily of the valley if you know how and when to plant.

Planting a lily of the valley

This flowers likes well-drained but moist soil and does best in partial shade, but can also be adapted to full sun or full shade, depending on the amount of moisture it receives. If you notice puddles 5-6 hours after a heavy rain, find another spot or cover it with organic material to increase the level of drainage improvement.

Ideal conditions for growing lily of the valley in the garden:

  • Location: in the shade.
  • Soil: slightly moist, rich in nutrients, sandy or loamy.
  • Soil pH: from alkaline to slightly acidic.

When to plant lilies of the valley

Lilies of the valley should be planted in late fall, as cool winter temperatures are necessary for a dormant period. Expect white bell-shaped flowers to appear in early to mid-spring. They may take some time to root and may not flower in the first year.

When planting a lily of the valley in the garden or in a pot, observe the following conditions:

  1. Planting distance: 10 cm – 20 cm.
  2. Planting pit: 10 cm deep.
  3. Mix the compost with a little soil.
  4. Place the rhizomes in the planting hole with the buds up.
  5. Fill the planting hole with a mixture of soil and compost and press lightly.
  6. Water the plant well.

Autumn planting

Knowing when to plant lily of the valley will help ensure it takes root in your garden. Lily of the valley should be planted in late autumn. Cool winter temperatures are necessary to ensure a proper period of rest.

Spring planting

You can also plant lilies of the valley in the spring. Plant lily of the valley rhizomes in fall or spring in your chosen location. Plant potted lilies of the valley only after flowering.

Lily of the valley

How to care for lilies of the valley

  1. Fertilize with compost when new shoots appear in the spring.
  2. Keep the soil evenly moist.
  3. Do not allow plants to dry out.
  4. Do not remove the leaves after flowering.
  5. In autumn, the plants will have orange inedible berries, and the leaves will turn golden.
  6. Mulch with rotted manure or compost in late fall.

Lily of the valley after flowering

This moisture-loving plant forms a sprawling mass of red seed pods left over after flowering, making the lily of the valley attractive after flowering. Individual underground rhizomes of this plant can be divided at any time after flowering. November or December would be an ideal time to divide and plant lily of the valley.

Read more: Feeding an orchid using a shell. The three most effective ways.