Rearranging Spider Lilies in North Texas Clay Soil

manda3(8a DFW Texas)November 5, 2010

I really need some advice. I bought a really old house and on the side I found a ton of Spider/Surprise/Hurricane Lilies pop up this September. I did notice that they are really packed together. There's a significant clump missing in one section and a few random clumps out in the yard. I'd like to move all the stray clumps into that missing clump.

The soil is clay. I'm really worried about doing something stupid and killing them all. Should I dig up the strays, separate them, and then just stick them in the clay? Should I dig them up in a big shovel full and place them as-is into a hole? Should I dig up all of them, separate all of them, fill in the bed with expanded shale/dirt/compost I do in the other beds, and replant them spread out in there? Will amending the missing clump mess up the surrounding clumps as far as drainage goes? And, can I do this now while I can still see the leaves or wait until they grow yellow in the spring?

Don't be afraid to be overly detailed. I have never messed with bulbs before and I need help! Thanks so much. :)

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iris_gal(z9 CA)

If these are Lycoris they dislike being disturbed. It is recommended to move/divide in June dormancy.

If I had to move some I'd definately take as big an intact clump as possible.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2010 at 10:40PM
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calistoga_al

In the event they are Amaryllis belladonna the advice from iris gal is still good. After disturbing they may not bloom for year or two and if planted in too much shade they may never bloom. Al

    Bookmark   November 7, 2010 at 1:08PM
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manda3(8a DFW Texas)

They're Lycoris radiata. Basically, I want to move three patches that are about four feet outside of the bed so that they fill in a missing patch in the bed. The only problem is that it's clay soil and they've been there so long I'm afraid of creating a bucket effect. I really can't decide if I should dig them all up and make a slightly raised bed there to match the other beds in my yard or just dig the outsiders up in big clay chunks and insert them in the missing spot. Or, if I should dig up the extras, separate them, and just make an amended bed that's not raised so it matches the rest and hope it doesn't create a bucket there.

I've got to move them, but I really hope you guys can tell me what's the best idea. :) :) :)

If that doesn't make sense, I can post pictures.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2010 at 11:03PM
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calistoga_al

I vote for digging up the big stray clumps and inserting in the vacant space. When digging in heavy clay it is most important that the soil moisture be right for digging, not too wet or two dry. Living with such soil you are probably used to that. Al

    Bookmark   November 8, 2010 at 7:28AM
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