Losing the Lilies...or when it all goes “pear-shaped”…

Gardening, by its very nature, is full of set backs and pitfalls.  Some we recover from and others, cause us to despair…

I’m afraid that this is towards the “despairing” end of the scale…My beautiful lilies, the stars of the garden have been struck down with a virus, probably mosaic virus and several of the plantings have been decimated.

Lillies with Mosaic Virus
Gorgeous “LaVerne Freeman”, my favorite…

“the stars of the garden have been struck down”

Lily "Gloriana"

Stately “Manisa”, which has been in the garden for over ten years…and the just-developing and delicious “Gloriana”

Lily "Manisa"

“it represents something of a  disaster”

Oriental-Trumpet lily crosses take around three years to reach a reasonable height and continue to grow higher and more floriferious for several more years, so losing them represents a loss of investment of time—lots of it, not to mention loving care.

To say that there are gaps left is something of an understatement and, for a garden that is committed to public openings, it represents something of a  disaster.

What to do to fill the gaps at short notice?  Well there is really nothing that can replace the substantial vertical statements made by the thick stems of the lilies with their gorgeous flowers.

And whatever it is must be quick-growing…and available.  I spent some time trawling the internet and asking gardening friends for help…fortunately, both have paid off.  An offer of plants and an online source of tiny seedlings of an appropriate color.

I have set out my trusty bamboo stakes in sizes to represent what I am thinking of planting and checked to see if it looks right in terms of proportion.

Now I wait with fingers crossed to see if the gaps become less obvious.  It won’t, of course, be the same, but I am hopeful that it will at least be pleasing for this year.

And then we shall see what can be done in the way of a longer-lasting recovery…which opens up the opportunity for a change…hmmm.

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