Spider Lily: Plant Care & Growing Guide

Spider Lily’s are originally native to China, Nepal, and Korea. However, they were introduced to Japan during the 1800s. 

These flowers have also been symbolically associated with death, as they are often placed on graves or used as decorations during funerals. 

Spider Lily Care & Growing Guide

1. Planting Your Spider Lily

These flowers originate from bulbs that resemble little white onions. To begin the planting process, they should be placed into a soil that is well-drainable during the late summer to early fall. Be sure that the pointed end of the bulb (which is called the neck) is facing upwards towards the sky. Make sure to plant the neck so it is at least at the proper soil level, or even only slightly coming out of the soil. 

Remember that flower bulbs like the Spider Lily that are buried far beneath the soil do not flower as well as others. There is an exception to this rule, however: if you are concerned that your Spider Lily will not be strong enough to survive in your planting zone.

If you are concerned about this, be sure to bury the bulb so it is just underneath the surface of the soil. This will give the bulb extra protection against freezing temperatures, which will in turn prevent the bulb in itself from freezing.

2. Flowering Tips

If you want your Spider Lily to bloom intricately following the previous planting season when you planted your bulb, your plant will require a long resting period from about late August until early September.

Remember, once the Spider Lily’s blooms have fallen off for the fall season, it is time to reduce watering the plant and cease fertilization. This happens for at least three weeks. It is also vital to limit the amount of light that your Spider Lily comes into contact with during the plant’s resting period as well.  

3. Light Conditions

Spider lily’s love the sun, but it can also adapt to partial shade, especially if it’s faced towards the sun during the hottest part of the day. Be careful with this, however, because it can develop a nasty leaf scorch if it’s in direct sunlight for too long.

Most gardeners have found that Spider Lily’s thrive in 6-8 hours a day of sunlight that increases their optimal growth. However, if you are in a hotter climate where sun beats down on your plants frequently, it is said that only 4-6 hours of sunlight a day should be the maximum amount. 

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In cooler climates, however, Spider Lily’s should be brought inside before the frost lays over top of them. A good turning point is when the temperatures go below 40 degrees at night. If they stay out during the cooler temperatures, their leaves have a risk of becoming cold-damaged.

Keep in mind that these plants are not prone to frost or cold weather at all, and if not properly taken care of during the first frost, they can die off considerably quickly. 

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4. Preferred Soil Conditions 

The ideal soil conditions for Spider Lily’s should be a little moist, but able to be well-drained. It also should be full of organic material, as well as fertile. If it is not, there are many fertilizers that can help change the pH balance of the soil to make it viable. Many gardeners recommend adding leaf or wood chip mulch around the plant to improve soil quality. 

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5. Water

One of the most persnickety traits of Spider Lily’s is that they love moist soil. These plants do their absolute best when planted in gardens that have consistent watering or in climates with a lot of rainfall. If you are placing these plants in your yard, the ideal place would be against pond borders or even next to a pool.

Although, you do not have to limit planting your Spider Lily to those areas. With these plants, short periods without water or drought is okay and not life-threatening. However, do not allow your Spider Lily to go more than a few days to a week without water at most. Also, keep a keen eye on them as they may need more water during the hottest times of the year in your specific climate.

6. Care

This plant is a low-maintenance plant that is a wonderful addition to your landscape or garden. They require little care for them to grow proficiently. 

As soon as you plant the bulbs, watering them once a week is vital. This is an exception only if you live in a wet area or if your planting zone calls for more watering of your plants. When your Spider Lilies are in full bloom, that is when you should begin watering your Spider Lily’s more frequently – this can be anywhere from a few days to a week.

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This extends the life of the blooms – especially if the weather conditions where you live are in a hot and dry climate. When your spider lily goes dormant in the summer, it is recommended to decrease watering all together until the stalk on your flower emerges.

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7. Fertilizing

Luckily, the Spider Lily requires little, if any, fertilizer. If your Spider Lily is not producing well, it is recommended to use a balanced granular fertilizer. Make sure you spread this in early spring, summer, and fall around the base of your Spider Lily’s. Throughout all the differing seasons, this should be plenty of food to get your Spider Lily through the year. 

A good tip is to fertilize monthly from spring throughout the summer, and only fertilize once n the fall. Do not fertilize at all in the winter. 

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Pests and Disease Problems

Spider Lily’s are not prone to many pest or disease problems. However, there are some types of grasshoppers that can be a problem to your plants. Although they do not touch the stems, they do like to nibble on the leaves of your Spider Lily’s. You can shoo away these pesky critters by using any bug spray or powder that is safe for your plant. 

The only other nuisance you have to worry about is how slugs and snails are both attracted to the long leaves of your Spider Lily. You can combat them by applying organic slug and snail bait around your Spider Lily to kill them off. 


Spider Lily’s would be a wonderful addition to your garden! If you are looking to buy Spider Lillie’s, they are easily able to be found at your local hardware or garden center. You can also purchase the plant online from many different retailers. Keep in mind that packages of bulbs usually contain anywhere from one to three bulbs.

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