Lilies forum: Am I doing the right thing?

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Name: ursula
Chile (Zone 9b)
Image
Mutisia
Apr 8, 2015 10:06 AM CST
Last spring (I'm in the Southern Hemisphere), I had some Bothrytis (sp?) on my Liliums, only asiatic hybrids and species lilies were affected, mainly the ones with yellow flowers. I understand this happened because of the unusually persistent dew we had every morning.

I carefully removed all affected leaves and disposed of them in sealed plastic bags in the garbage. I also applied some Captan powder to each pot (my lilies are all potted) before watering.

Now it is time to remove the stems. Some are totally dry, other just wilted. The dry ones can be burned, but I'm afraid the other ones (most of my Lilium stems) will have to be put in sealed plastic bags and disposed in the garbage bin.

Questions:

1. Have I proceeded right so far?
2. should I proceed as described with the stems?
3. how often should a apply Captan on my lilly-pots and dry powder or diluted?
4. some Liliums will be replanted in new pots. Should I prepare the soil beforehand?
5. is there a better method to control Bothrytis?

Any advice will be appreciated.


Thumb of 2015-04-08/Mutisia/05ba2f

Name: Lorn (Roosterlorn)
S.E Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
Lilies Seed Starter Pollen collector Bee Lover Region: Wisconsin
Image
Roosterlorn
Apr 8, 2015 7:49 PM CST
All good ideas. Keep in mind botrytis is a type of fungus that is ever present to some degree in the soil. It plays natural part of the decomposition cycle. It's spores can be airborne as well. So when watering your plants, a couple things happen. First, soil is easily splashed onto the lower leaves, both from manual watering or by rain. Second, tiny gas bubbles that form and accumulate in the soil contain botrytis spores that are released into the air in the presence of water. There's a certain smell after a rain or after watering called 'petrichlor'. When you smell that, be prepared to spray the entire plant with a copper base fungicide.

It is best to always be as proactive as possible. Starting now this Fall, do a respectable clean up of old dead stems; nothing extraordinary, just respectable. When Spring comes and just before the noses poke up, spray the garden soil or pots and soil with a good copper base fungicide (or a little Captan worked lightly into the potted surface). This will keep the botrytis population down for a few weeks and keep your risk to a minimum. However, as soon as warm, humid weather arrives, spray the entire plant with a weak solution every two weeks or after a rain. Stop any spraying when buds are about to open and while blooming, then resume when done blooming. To avoid the rain splashing soil onto the plants, cover the soil with a good layer of coarse mulch. The way to combat dew is to have a fungicide already applied. I know exactly what you're talking about. The theory is that the burning rays of sunshine are magnified or made more intense by the dew droplet, thereby making many tiny injuries to the top surface of the leaf where botrytis can get a start. Having a light application of fungicide will prevent botrytis from setting in on those tiny damaged areas. And last, make sure your plants aren't too crowded--keep a reasonable space between them for good air flow.

Name: Lorn (Roosterlorn)
S.E Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
Lilies Seed Starter Pollen collector Bee Lover Region: Wisconsin
Image
Roosterlorn
Apr 8, 2015 8:52 PM CST
Ursula, I've got you location on my weather map now. I was watching that heavy rain to your north for days until the radar went down. Did any of that make it down to your area? That was quite a flooding!
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN zone 4a
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Plant Identifier
Image
Leftwood
Apr 8, 2015 9:52 PM CST
Just to elaborate on what Lorn said, botrytis infections almost always occur on the plant above the soil. Treating the soil to reduce inocula (inoculum) is very helpful, but does not replace application of a fungicide on the plant itself. Because Captan and copper fungicides are contact pesticides, they work best as a preventative, and may not be completely effective once the disease is manifested.

I don't have the botrytis problems that many people do (even here where I live). So I don't have much experience combating it. All of my beds are mulched all year, though, and that's an easy environmentally safe step you should practice (even in pots).
[Last edited by Leftwood - Apr 9, 2015 10:10 AM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #825457 (4)
Name: della
hobart, tasmania
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Photo Contest Winner: 2015
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dellac
Apr 9, 2015 5:41 AM CST
Botrytis is a big problem here, but I admit to not doing much about it, because living with it means that my seedlings - the ones that thrive - are that much more resistant to it. But I have been known to break and apply a copper spray early in the season if I get really worried that really little seedling bulbs will be wiped out before they get a chance to put on any weight. I think it slows them down, so that many don't flower until their third or fourth summers rather than second, which is a torment when I'm just busting to see the reslt of a cross! Then I remind myself when I finally see them, that they're survivors. Hilarious!

But burning old stems is good, if you can do it. Collecting and burning flowers as they fade helps too - less material to harbour the fungus. Lorn and Rick have good advice. Smiling
Name: Lorn (Roosterlorn)
S.E Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
Lilies Seed Starter Pollen collector Bee Lover Region: Wisconsin
Image
Roosterlorn
Apr 9, 2015 5:58 AM CST
Also, if you don't have Captan or a copper base fungicide on hand or made up, you can use rose spray that's formulated to control 'black spot' on rose leaves. That will work in a pinch or if you only have a single plant to treat, etc. For small applications, most fungicides are available in hand spray bottles, too.

Botrytis weather and botrytis.
Thumb of 2015-04-09/Roosterlorn/7cf088


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Name: Lorn (Roosterlorn)
S.E Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
Lilies Seed Starter Pollen collector Bee Lover Region: Wisconsin
Image
Roosterlorn
Apr 9, 2015 6:13 AM CST
Della, you're right. Tiny little seedlings do not like it one bit! A much weaker solution must be used on the little ones--and it works. Think of it the same way you think of aspirin. You wouldn't give a little baby a 5 grain dose like an adult; no, you'd use a lose dose or something like 80 mg instead. Full grown plants can take a pretty good charge without damage but the little ones are really sensitive.
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN zone 4a
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Plant Identifier
Image
Leftwood
Apr 9, 2015 7:37 AM CST
To my knowledge, unfortunately, there's been no safety testing for edibility with pesticide used on lilies. So be prudent if you plant to eat them. Smiling
Name: ursula
Chile (Zone 9b)
Image
Mutisia
Apr 9, 2015 8:36 AM CST
WOW! Thank you so much to each one of you for your input. So much wisdom and .... for free! Whistling

From Lorn's descriptions, it seems I will have to learn to live with botrytis. The pictures you posted could have been taken where I live. Lots of fog and dew during the colder months. This is probably increased in my case, since I live in a quite narrow creek and am surrounded by native woods.

My fault is that some of the asiatic and species Liliums are a bit crowded (which I will be taking care of these Autumn months). The oriental Liliums have barely been affected and now I realize why: there are no more than 3 bulbs in a large pot.

My love for Lilies is far more than the ideal of not using chemicals. Next time I go to Santiago (haven't since last October) I will check if these plastic fungicide spray bottles are available here. Will also check on commercial mulches available.

Lorn, after it rains there is a lovely scent in the air here, mainly for Boldo trees that surround me. I have not detected any other scent.

The rains in northern Chile have been devastating, causing landslides and floods. Officialy, some 29 people died (the ones they found), but over 100 remain 'disappeared'. Yesterday I read there is not even an estimate as to when children will be able to return to school - everything is devastated. The main problem they are facing now is that when the mud that covered the cities dries, the dust will kill more people. I do not understand why they do not sent militaries to clean up the affected areas. All we got in the central area of the country was one night of heavy rain, but that was a blessing to us. It did not solve our draught problems, but it was such a good feeling of hope for further rain.

Rick, is there any contact fungicide you can recommend?

Della, so it was botrytins that made dissapear so many seedlings that had already sprouted and looked so good. I was always expecting them to re-appear - thought they were just dormant.

Rick, I think I would rather starve than eating one of my beloved Lilium bulbs Lovey dubby . I'm not critizising your appetite for them, it's just I cound not eat them (maybe for the same reason my grandmother was not able to eat the chickens she raised). There is a sort of bond Rolling my eyes.

Thank you all so much for for all the information provided.

One last question: can you identify the Oriental Lilium in my post? I have had this Lily for some years and it sometimes blooms very pale and others even a bit more colour intensive than the picture. Being all my Lilies potted, I sometimes move them looking for a better location. Here, Liliums are not sold by name. I suppose this is in order not to pay royalty or something like that.
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN zone 4a
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Plant Identifier
Image
Leftwood
Apr 9, 2015 10:30 AM CST
>>> Rick, is there any contact fungicide you can recommend?

Obviously, use a fungicide that says it will kill botrytis. It's a very common disease, so if it is not listed on the back of the container, it won't do the job. Beyond this, take advice from those who have experience using the chemicals, which is not me.

Rest assure, I only eat the lilies I have in excess, and hybrids from my own hybridizing that don't display the best qualities. When you grow from seed and plant them in garden plots, there is always more and more lilies. But if I grew all my lilies in pots, I don't think I would ever grow enough to eat. That would be too expensive and too much work, and I would have more of a sentimental bond with them. Smiling

I'm not good at identifying hybrids like that oriental, but with species, I could be your man.
Name: ursula
Chile (Zone 9b)
Image
Mutisia
Apr 9, 2015 6:25 PM CST
Rick, the reason my Lilies are all potted up is because the place where I am living is a slight slope that had not been altered by humans: my intention is to alter it as little as possible (no machines to level, etc.) and my income is rather small. I want raised beds because of my bone pains and overweight, and because of rabbits I am thinking of a way to provide my future raised beds with some kind of chicken wire or so protecting my plants when i'm not out there. I will have to hire workers for this job (I'm saving money for this purpose!).

Don't worry, I will be very cautious using the fungicides - until now I thought I would never use them, but healthy Lilies are what I want.
Name: della
hobart, tasmania
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Photo Contest Winner: 2015
Image
dellac
Apr 10, 2015 6:16 AM CST
Ursula, there could be other things causing or contributing to your baby bulbs' disappearance. I think botrytis helps weed out the weak among mine, but add things like getting too dry then too wet, too hot, too cold, competition for nutrients and light, animals... whether they like the water and potting mix I'm using, pH.... Blinking

If the leaves have been healthy before dormancy but then foliage doesn't return, I don't think botrytis would be the cause. I don't think it attacks the bulb underground.
Name: ursula
Chile (Zone 9b)
Image
Mutisia
Apr 10, 2015 6:32 AM CST
I agree with you, Della.

I do not have the room to grow seedlings under light and more stable temperatures. I have grown them all outdoors, as any other seeds, forgetting that Lilies are Royalty and deserve better Lovey dubby Instead of blaming botrytis, I should be grateful for the ones that made it for me and make me so happy.

But one thing i know for sure: I shall persist! Big Grin
Skåne, Sweden (Zone 7b)
Bulbs Lilies Bee Lover Irises Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Photo Contest Winner: 2016
Image
William
May 10, 2015 2:59 PM CST
Ursula, wonder if you got a name to this pretty lily?

If not I wonder if you are absolutely sure this is an Oriental and not an O.T. lily? If so then please just ignore this nonsense Whistling

My thinking is that Chile does produce a substantial crop of lilies bulbs for cutting and the O.T. Robina is one of the most common lilies for cutting. So it kind of makes sense that it sneaks into a little bag masquerading as an Oriental lily. Speaking from experience I know unnamed lilies or various mixes really can be anything.

On the other hand I can't really see the foliage that clearly here and perhaps that is distinctively Oriental looking. All things considering I would absolutely not trust my own judgement here Hilarious! But on the other hand this does look a lot like Robina (or a very similar O.T.).
Name: ursula
Chile (Zone 9b)
Image
Mutisia
May 10, 2015 5:22 PM CST
Hello, William!

I got no name for the Lilium in the picture. As a matter of fact, what I have purchased locally are all nameless asiatic and oriental Liliums (or what I thought until minutes ago they are). I bought the bulbs in a pack of five, marked as usual: 5 pink oriental Liliums. There are only two commercial Lilium bulb importers for gardeners in Chile and both distribute them in HomeDepot-like stores, either in packs of 5 bulbs (with very little peat and usually already sprouting) or as potted blooming Liliums. Orientals are all labeled either 'pink' or 'white' and asiatics also include yellow orange and red(dish). Planted in small pots and with blooms I have purchased what I have identified as 'tiny Padhye' here at ATP. I suppose these importers do not label them with their proper names to void paying royalty rights, or to save money on having just one type of label printed Confused

Since I joined ATP, I have learned that the little I knew about Liliums is .... worth nothing and that I have to re-learn everything (and I am eager to do so). If you tell me the Lily in my picture is not an oriental Lilium, I am willing to change my switch. As I said before, this is the info provided by the importer and not by an expert.

I googled 'Robinia' images, and many of the pictures match my Lily. Thanks for giving my 'baby' her name. Thumbs up It's already dark, so tomorrow I will take a picture of this Lilium's foliage (not totally wilted) and post it here.

This Lily blooms with much paler flowers when planted under dappled shade than when it gets sun, as you can see from these pictures:

Thumb of 2015-05-10/Mutisia/71e442 Thumb of 2015-05-10/Mutisia/78120b

You are right, Chile produces large crops of 'cut flower Liliums' but, as with so many other crops, most of the best are exported. I do not visit cut flower shops at all, but what you see on Supermarkets are all asiatic lilies (now I have to ask: are they true asiatics? no longer sure Green Grin! ).

One thing I can tell you for sure: I'm hooked into Lilies!

Name: ursula
Chile (Zone 9b)
Image
Mutisia
May 10, 2015 5:27 PM CST
I have/had this other Lilium that I was told is an OT

Thumb of 2015-05-10/Mutisia/e75d6c

The colour looks brighter than it really is (I would say it is 'dustier)

Thumb of 2015-05-10/Mutisia/46c56b

This one I obtained trading with a lady in a neighbour village. All she was able to tell me is that they had purchased a quite old property that had this and other Liliums in the garden (the other one she gave me was L. auratum var. platyphyllum, as I found out).

As you might have heard, we are going through a terrible draught fror some 7 years in the row. Therefore, my Lilies have not had enough water during the extremely hot summer months we had and this year, L. auratum did not come back. Probably was too weak to fight botrytis or something else and succumbed.

On the other hand, this OT (mother bulb and a 'daughter') probably did not like the new place where I located the pots this summer and grew only half as tall and quite meager. Having had only one night rain this far in Autumn, rabbits ate the still green stems of these babies to the ground (not sure if they also dug(?) the bulbs. The only good thing is that I saved seeds from the previous year that I am sowing now. I hope they will be at least similar to the originals.

The lady with whom I traded is no longer and option, as her Liliums were attacked by the Lilium mosaic virus.
[Last edited by Mutisia - May 10, 2015 6:01 PM (+)]
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Name: Lorn (Roosterlorn)
S.E Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
Lilies Seed Starter Pollen collector Bee Lover Region: Wisconsin
Image
Roosterlorn
May 11, 2015 2:52 AM CST
Yes, this latest one is an Oriental-Trumpet ( OT ) as well.

As to exactly what name or cultivar; hopefully somebody will recognize it. There are so many 'pinks' with OT's that it gets kind of confusing.

But the first 'pink' you posted is definitely 'Robina'. When taking pictures of a lily, especially for identification, I would take the flower, the foliage, the stem and the inflorescence or flower head. See here, you can compare my Robina to yours with mine below. And, yes, your observations about Robina being darker and more intense in full sun is correct. The buds of quite a few OT's need a lot of light during the last few days of budding to develop full color. That's sort of a family trait of the Trumpet side of the family. Photos taken July, 2014
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Name: Lorn (Roosterlorn)
S.E Wisconsin (Zone 5b)
Lilies Seed Starter Pollen collector Bee Lover Region: Wisconsin
Image
Roosterlorn
May 11, 2015 3:31 AM CST
Ursula, I see your number #1 challenge as the rabbits, first, and the drought, second. Lilies can withstand long dry periods without water very well, provided there is enough foliage for minimum biological functions--and the plant will adjust the foliage it needs to do that. But, first you have to keep the rabbits out and give the plant a chance to grow full season.. And, besides, rabbits spread diseases, too, by their nibbling and chewing as the go from one plant to another. Many weeds and other plants that grow wild have virus and diseases also that rabbits can transport with their saliva so you must keep them out. Now, during you off season, is a good time to start making plans to put up a chicken wire fence--it doesn't take much and it doesn't need to be fancy to do the job.

As far as the drought conditions, a heavy 4 to 6 inch ( 10 to 15cm) mulch will really do a lot to hold moisture and to keep the soil cool. If you have lilies in pots, group them close together and then surround and cover the entire pots with mulch. Afternoon shade would be a big plus. Heavy mulching can cut your watering requirements by as much as 1/2 to 2/3rds. Smiling
Skåne, Sweden (Zone 7b)
Bulbs Lilies Bee Lover Irises Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Photo Contest Winner: 2016
Image
William
May 11, 2015 12:15 PM CST
So good Lorn could confirm that this was Robina, as I've not yet grown this one to flower. I do however have Robina planted for this year and actually put it a little bit shaded as I thought the colour would fade in the sun Hilarious! . So I have certainly learned something new today.
Sad thing that you have to suffer from such horrible drought. Certainly putting a stress to everything and wild animals are of course also even more likely to attack garden plants when it's extremely dry.

Yes cut flowers from Chile, but isn't there also many bulb farms? Chile Flowerbulbs, scroll down a little to read about last years bulb harvest: zaboplant
How strange then that you actually have to import bulbs for your gardens while at the same time exporting bulbs in the other direction, but we do live in a strange world.

Name: ursula
Chile (Zone 9b)
Image
Mutisia
May 11, 2015 2:00 PM CST
Thanks for your input, Lorn.

William, Lorn, the leaves from my Robinias do not look like yours. This is what I photographed a while ago:


This is the foliage of the pale Robinia, in dappled shade:

Thumb of 2015-05-11/Mutisia/05e098


This one is the one that gets most sun:

Thumb of 2015-05-11/Mutisia/a7c502


This one is placed under very light shade (under and Acacia caven):

Thumb of 2015-05-11/Mutisia/6dc6b1

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