Blooming Plant of
Lilies-of-the-valley have nodding, bell-shaped flowers in loose
spikes that bloom in one-sided clusters. The stems are usually 4
to 8 inches long with six to eight clusters of flowers
surrounded by beautiful green, bladelike foliage. The flowers
come in single and double forms. The plants have a sweet, mild
fragrance that makes them a favorite for perfumes. They are
grown from small rhizomes, often referred to as “pips.”
White and pale pink varieties of the plants are available.
Lilies-of-the-valley will bloom for five to seven days.
Lilies-of-the-valley are available mainly in the spring, but
they can be obtained year-round if orders are placed with enough
ETHYLENE SENSITIVITY Some
cultivars show ethylene sensitivity. Check with your suppliers
to make sure your plants have been treated with an ethylene
inhibitor at the grower level.
IN-STORE AND CONSUMER CARE
LIGHT Keep light levels
high. Diffused light is best if the plants are kept indoors.
Filtered sunlight is ideal for outdoor plants.
WATER Keep soil evenly moist
by checking the plants daily. Severe drying will cause the
leaves to yellow and wilt. If the plants dry out, flower
development may be delayed.
Lilies-of-the-valley do best outdoors. They may exhibit
yellowing leaves under interior conditions. Keep them in cool
locations at 60 F to 65 F. Flowers tend to wilt quickly if they
are exposed to heat or poor air circulation.
STORAGE These plants can be
held in floral coolers at 36 F to 38 F to extend shelf life.
SOIL The plants prefer
well-drained, rich, sandy loam.
HUMIDITY Keep humidity
levels moderate for best results.
FERTILIZER Use a bloom
fertilizer until the blossoms are developed and opened. Discard
the pots when blossoming is finished, or try planting the pips
TOXICITY All parts of
lilies-of-the-valley are toxic. If ingested, headache, nausea,
slow pulse and excessive urination may occur. Advise customers
to keep small children and pets away from these plants.
BLOOMS Check the blossoms
for any sign of breakage, wilt or browning.
PESTS Aphids are the biggest
problems. In most cases, they can be washed away with a gentle
spray of water.
MEANING The Latin word
“convallis” means “valley,” referring to where
lilies-of-the-valley are found. “Majalis” means “May-flowering.”
are members of the Liliaceae (lily) family. There are more than
3,000 plants in this family, including many medicinal and food
species in addition to ornamental species. Close relatives
include lilies, tulips and Asparagus.
is a native of Europe, North America and Northern Asia. In
England, it appears as a wildflower.
Some information provided by:
• The Chain of Life Network®,
Images courtesy of The John Henry Company
Reach “Fresh Flower of the Month” writer Steven W. Brown, AIFD,
or (415) 239-3140.
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