Jenae Ryan, Horticulture Agent
The white, trumpet-shaped flowers of Easter Lilies bring joy and symbolize hope and life. In order to prolong their beauty in your home, you can transplant them outdoors to enjoy them for many years. Wait to transplant potted Easter Lilies until the last bloom on the plant has withered. Once the lily is finished flowering and the risk of frost has passed, it can be planted outside in a sunny location.
Prepare a well-drained flower bed in a sunny location. Adequate drainage is important for the health of lily plants. Plant the bulbs 3 inches below ground level and cover with an additional 3 inches of soil or mulch. Bulbs should be placed 12-18 inches apart. Water the area thoroughly after planting to prevent air pockets from forming in the soil. Once the original foliage begins to die-back, you can cut the stems back to ground-level to encourage new growth. Easter Lilies grown in greenhouse conditions are maintained so that they bloom at Easter, but naturally they bloom in the summer. You may be able to get a second bloom after transplanting, but if not they should bloom the following summer. Mulching will help keep the soil moist and will help provide protection in the winter months. The mulch may need to be removed in the spring to allow for new shoots to emerge.
For more information on Easter Lilies, check out this publication from Clemson University Extension: https://www.clemson.edu/extension/hgic/plants/pdf/hgic1555.pdf.
Best of luck transplanting your Easter Lilies!