Lily of the Valley- Growing in Georgia

Q: I’m from Ohio and one thing that I remember is the Lily of the Valley plants growing outside the side door of our home. It was a huge patch, growing larger and larger and larger each year. The fragrance was incredible. Are they available in Atlanta?

A: My experience with Lily of the Valley, Convallaria majalis, has been mixed. I have planted and lost them twice. However, I regularly drive past a yard which I notice is covered with them every spring.

My feeling is that the plant doesn’t much care for Atlanta’s summer heat. If you want to experiment, find a spot with bright shade most of the day. Early day sunshine would be fine but not after noon.

Amend the proposed bed with three inches of soil conditioner mixed ten inches deep. Plant the pips (fleshy roots) when they become available this spring at garden centers or find a bulb catalog that can ship some to you.

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