Sunday, October 13, 2013

Renga Lilies Everywhere

In addition to putting in new plants, I'm taking advantage of the cooler temperatures to begin moving plants around.  In fact, I spent a good part of Saturday doing just that.  The biggest change involved digging, dividing and replanting 3 large Arthropodium cirratum (aka Renga Lily) I'd originally planted on our lower slope.  The summer sun was more intense there than I'd anticipated and, while the plants soldiered through the heat and dry conditions, they didn't look their best as the summer drew to a close.

Arthropodium cirratum in February

Arthropodium cirratum at the end of September 

The plants tolerate dry shade but dry soil in full sun was asking too much of them.  I moved some daylilies from the backyard border to replace the Renga lilies.  As the Renga lily clumps were large, I decided to divide them and spread them around the upper level of my garden.  The plants divided easily with just a tug.

Now I have Renga lilies in the garden bed bordering my neighbor to the northwest, where I installed 3 of the divisions.

The foliage of the Renga lily looks like a smaller version of the Agave attenuata to the right of it

Another division was added to the bed on the other side of the house near 2 existing plants of the same variety.

And the last 2 went into a nearby dry shade bed, where I haven't been successful in getting much of anything to grow.  I put 3 Renga lilies there this past spring so the additions make 5.  This may be overkill but, until I can come up with an alternative as tolerant of dry shade as these plants, they'll have to do.

I'd moved one Acanthus to a moister end of that bed earlier.  More recently, I transplanted cuttings of peppermint geranium (Pelargonium tomentosum), foxglove seedlings (Digitalis purpurea), and a mint bush (Prostanthera ovalifolia 'Variegata').

The area's looking a little better but I could still use some drought and shade tolerant plants to fill in the bed's mid-section, which is exceptionally dry (probably due to tree roots).  I've tried Geranium catabrigeniense, Geranium macrorrhizum, Hellebores, various Heuchera, and Francoa sonchifolia with little success.   I'm open to any ideas!


  1. I look forward all summer to cool damp weather for moving things...and just hope I can remember all the plans I made and find time to do them.

  2. Love this Lily Kris, wish we could grow outdoors here. However the foliage does look similar with the hardier Beschorneria septentrionalis.

  3. You have been busy! Fall is the perfect time for transplanting and rearranging flower beds. I hope your lilies do well in their new locations. Dry shade is tough! Epimedium has done well for me.

  4. I wasn't familiar with Renga lilies and had to look the plant up. It looks like its lovely, but not hardy here, at least in cold winters. Darn. Your beds should are looking good.

    Barbara H.

  5. Mine has been devastated by Seattle slugs every spring. After 3 struggling years, perhaps it should be given a decent goodbye. A waste of money, time, effort.