Scaling involves the removal of the scales in a non-tunicate bulb (like lily) and inducing bulblets to form along the cut edge. Three to five bulblets can form on each scale.

Photo of a non-tunicate bulb.

Photo of a non-tunicate bulb scale with bulblets forming on it.

Scaling is done soon after flowering in mid-summer, but is also successful during winter. The outer scales are removed and essentially treated as leaf cuttings. A simple method is to place lily scales in a poly bag containing damp vermiculite. Bulblets will form in two months.

Photo of three scales showing the development of bulblets.

Easter lily propagation is from bulb scaling.

Scales removed from dormant bulbs are planted in the field to produce the next season's crop.

Photo of easter lily plants growing in a field, wtih scales laid beside them.

Photo of flowering easter lilies.

It can take several years to get a flowering size bulb.

Photo of lilies growing in crop rows.

Second photo of lilies growing in crop rows.