MUGUET: Plant the claws, maintain, multiply or divide ...

MUGUET: Plant the claws, maintain, multiply or divide ...

Lily of the valley, delicate scented bells

Everyone knows this plant which symbolizes May, the 1st. Lily of the valley is a plant that grows naturally in shady meadows and undergrowth. It is, moreover, a bioindicator of age and of the original natural environment. In our gardens, at the beginning of spring, a carpet of bells appears, white and fragrant, in a "cone" of oval leaves of a beautiful fresh green. The plant can be in ideal conditions a little invasive. It blooms in April or May, and it is quite naturally that it has become the symbol of spring.

Did you know ? The lily of the valley was a symbol of luck in royalty - Stéphane Berne, get out of this body - it was in the middle of the 16th century that the "legend" of lily of the valley began. There are also many "stories" about it. One of them indicates that the king offered, from 1561, a sprig of lily of the valley to all the ladies of the court ... A sprig of lily of the valley brings good luck. It was after having received one, himself, the previous year from Louis de Girard de Maisonforte when The young King Charles IX and his mother Catherine de Medici visited him in the Dauphiné. The following year, therefore, King Charles IX distributed the sprigs of lily of the valley with this sentence: "So be it every year!" ".
The lily of the valley as a symbol has crossed the centuries by changing its vocation, in the post-revolutionary period in 1793 it became the symbol of "Republican day", April 26. Other events will modify the festivals and customs until today.

Botanical name:

Convallaria Majilis

Plant type:

• Cycle: Perennial
• Foliage: Lapsed
• Hardiness: Hardy plant (-20 ° C)
• Family: liliaceae liliaceae
• Ports: Flowering erect stem and calyx with 2 leaves
• Exhibition: Partial shade and shade
• Ground : Rich, humus and fresh.
• Plantation: fall
• Flowering: April May
• Fruiting:
• Rooting: Rhizome tracing (claws)
• Cultivation area: Zone 5 - see the France or Quebec hardiness card
• Origin: Europe, Asia, North America.
• Honey plant: Yes
• Edible plant: No
• Poisonous Plant: The whole plant is poisonous


• The plant is resistant to low temperatures: - 25 °
• The root system is a claw, a "scribing" rhizome that develops horizontally and has many small roots, which allows it a very strong development from the moment it is implanted in a place that suits it well.

Benefits to the garden

• In the garden, it's an early spring fireworks display! The plant is ideal for creating a carpet of flowers under a large tree, at the back of the garden where the soil over the years has taken on humus.
• It can also be planted between bushes or in the shade of a wall or low wall.

Description of thrush:

A beautiful calyx with two leaves, of a beautiful soft green, pointed about 15 to 25 cm in height, from which a graceful and thin stem is extracted to which up to 20 bells clings, forming a beautiful Flowering stalk, immaculate white. The bells are light, round and drooping.

Gardener's Info

As mentioned above, Lily of the valley is originally an undergrowth plant. In order to thrive, it needs a soil rich in humus and fresh. The plant will need to be thinned out when it becomes too invasive.

Caution. Little is known about it, but Lily of the Valley is a very poisonous plant. pay attention to the collection tray, clean them well after use.


Lily of the valley is a plant shade and partial shade.


Lily of the valley is in bloom from mid-April to May.
In the cooler regions, lily of the valley can bloom in May.

When to plant lily of the valley?

• Set up in autumn at month of October.

How to plant it?

• Work the soil to loosen it.
• Dig a shallow hole between 5 and 10 cm.
• Usually the claw has a “leaf start” or a “green sprout” which should face upwards.
• Place the claw.
• Cover with soil.
• Leave 30 cm between each claw.

A word from the amateur gardener:

When the Lily of the valley grows, it makes rhizomes which progress every year in the garden. It is possible to "divide" them. The idea is either to withdraw it for lighten the area - the plant has become too present - that is, to benefit a new area of ​​the garden. This operation is performed at the same time.

Maintenance of thrush:

• Lily of the valley does not necessarily require maintenance. But when it is too invasive, it is possible to remove rhizomes in part to limit the area of ​​colonnization, or even to aim at it to displace some.
• At the end of the season, cut back the leaves.

When to multiply thrush?

• In autumn after flowering and before very cold weather.

Divide to multiply lily of the valley

• Using a spade fork, dig a reasonable distance and deep enough to find the lily of the valley claws, so as not to damage the rhizome and interfere with the next "replanting".
• Once the operation is successful, remove as much soil as possible, remove dry or damaged leaves.
• This is an important moment. once the earth is gone, remove the old leaves.
• You are going to divide the claw with a knife, being particularly careful that the 2 parts resulting from this cut retain a start of leaves, in order to facilitate restarting.
• To replant Lily of the valley, all you have to do is prepare the new area to a depth of 20 cm. Add compost if necessary to enrich the soil (this is the same operation as for planting freshly purchased lily of the valley).
• With a rake, break up any clods and remove the weeds ...
• Dig the place that will receive the divided rhizome, usually 5 to 10 cm is sufficient.
• Lay the plant down flat, making sure that the start of the leaf is facing upwards.
• Cover with soil. You can add a mixture of compost and potting soil.

A word from the amateur gardener:

In cold regions, don't hesitate to cover with a bed of leaves to lessen the effects of winter.

Other varieties

• Only one type species: Convallaria Majilis

Agrees with

Snowdrops, cyclamen, grape hyacinths, bluebells

With or without a garden ...

In the garden : Place lily of the valley in shady places, where the sun is hidden by trees or appears intermittently.
• Without garden: Grow mguet in a planter, simply, on a window sill or on the terrace.

Quick sheet:

Photo: VerboseDreamer - - Under Creative Commons license - Retouched for Our website

Lily of the valley

Symbolic flower of May 1st, lily of the valley seduces with its delicate white bells. This flower from the Liliaceae family is commonly found throughout the northern hemisphere. Several varieties have been developed from the species: 'Albostriata', 'Flore Pleno', etc.

  • Scientific name : Convallaria majalis
  • Family: Liliaceae
  • Varieties: 'Albostriata', 'Flore Pleno'
  • Flower color:White flowers
  • Plantation:Planting in September, Planting in October
  • Exhibition:Part shade
  • Soil type: Rich in humus, light
  • Use : On the edge, In a pot, In the undergrowth, In a planter
  • Flowering:Flowering in April, Flowering in May
  • Foliage:Lapsed
  • Diseases, pests: Gray rot
  • Watering: Abundant in summer
  • Longevity: Perennial
  • Height: 20-25 cm
  • Symbolic: Lily of the valley is a lucky flower
  • Medicinal virtues: Poisonous plant if swallowed

Characteristics of lily of the valley or lily of the valleys

In France, Lily of the Valley is inextricably linked to Labor Day and offering Lily of the Valley on May 1st is a deeply rooted custom. This tradition comes to us from King Charles IX, who offered it to the ladies of his court as a good luck charm, wishing them: "That it be done so every year". Then this custom spreads, falters and is lost for a while.
It will be brought to light by several artists such as Félix Mayol who wore it in the buttonhole for a triumphant premiere or Christian Dior who offered it to his little hands and clients. And it is under Pétain that the Lily of the valley takes the place of the eglantine to celebrate Labor Day and no longer that of the workers.
However, we find lily of the valley long before in many myths and legends, and it would be Apollo who would have created this Plant

Cultivation and maintenance of thrush

Growing and caring for thrush is simple.

  • Lily of the valley needs water: keep the soil moist. Water it in the summer. Be careful not to let the earth dry out.
  • Aerate the planting space from year to year if necessary, removing a few weakened plants.

The best way to keep a lily of the valley in a pot for a long time is to place it in a cool enough room, and protect the pot from direct sunlight. water it regularly, but always emptying the saucer so that its roots do not soak in water.

Where does thrush grow? Basically, this plant comes from Japan. In France, it is found in woods, hedges, mountain meadows, in short, in any temperate zone. There is therefore very little chance of seeing them in the Mediterranean regions.

Where to place thrush and how to take care of it?

It will be necessary to place the lily of the valley half shade, because he appreciates the freshness. The foot of a tree is a perfectly suited place. Soil rich in humus and a good humidity are also needed. You can also grow lily of the valley around your house on the north side!

To maintain thrush, consider bringing compost on the ground at least once a year. Also, keep the soil always moist.

In pot, it is rather difficult to keep for a long time. If you have the chance, transplant it to the garden. If you want to keep it in a pot, water it regularly.

Since it produces rhizomes and not roots, it is very easy to grow to divide.

Finally, he thrush is not really afraid of diseases, but gray rot in too heavy soil can be a problem.

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