Carelessly dug up, destroyed lilies a big disappointment

Duncan – The following is an open letter to the person(s) responsible for jacking some wild white “Easter lilies” from the side of a trail in a certain municipal forest: I don’t think you were doing anything illegal, but it was kind of inconsiderate. In your quest for the pretty lilies, you made a mess that I had to clean up.

Your careless digging method damaged the young lily plants there. Not only that, you took from a tiny patch of lilies. There are literally dozens of places where they are plentiful where you could have dug some up without affecting the population – or without anybody caring – including in that very forest, if you looked hard enough. Why take them from a spot where there are hardly any there? That’s bad for biodiversity.

It was also foolish to take blooming lilies. Larger plants, particularly those with flowers attached, have deeper corms and are more easily damaged in digging and transport than smaller, younger plants with single leaves.

Those lilies, unless picked, only bloom every seven years, because it takes that long for a seedling to mature, and also how long it takes the corm to recover after producing seeds.

If you’re an older person, that’s a long time and you won’t get to enjoy them very often unless you pick them every year, including this year.

It would have been better, and made much less of a mess, to take younger plants whose bulbs are not so deep in the soil. They can be removed with minimal disturbance, have a greater chance of surviving transplanting, and will bloom sooner than the ones you took.

Besides, though you had no way of knowing this, I had planted some of those lilies.

One had been there for many years, but with no neighbours to pollinate with, it had no chance to reproduce. Only after I had gotten several as a gift from a friend about 20 years ago and decided the best place was in the woods rather than the garden, were there any seedlings around it.

In fact, not far from that spot, literally a few steps away, is a section that 20 years ago I had to restore with nearby native plants because it had been severely damaged about 30 years ago by idiots on motorbikes.

I was looking forward to looking at those lilies bloom and taking pictures of them, and was extremely disappointed when I saw the dug up mess, with no attempt made whatsoever to smooth the soil over, and a severed and wilted single lily leaf.

My advice to you is don’t take lilies from that spot again. Other people like to look at them, and you can buy that kind of lily at places like Dinter’s.

Oh and one more thing, learn how to dig. You’re doing it wrong.

April J. Gibson

Duncan

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The old Yount school in Youbou has stood empty for years, but now a group has plans to turn it into a mixed-use property with affordable housing and tourist services. (Submitted)
Group sets sights on tranforming old Yount school property in Youbou

School District 79 has already commenced a process to sell the school through a formal proposal call

North Cowicha to extend the time lines of its official community plan update. (File photo)
North Cowichan to extend time line of OCP review

Municipality also adds $55,000 to OCP budget

Cowichan Capitals’ Logan Rands digs for the puck along the boards in the Alberni Valley Bulldogs’ zone midway through the third period of their BC Hockey League game at the Alberni Valley Multiplex on Saturday, April 10, 2021. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)
Cowichan Capitals pick up first two wins of BCHL season

Brockman, Moffatt both up to four goals on the year

A nearly four-hour standoff at an apartment complex on Cowichan Lake Road in Duncan ended peacefully on Wednesday, April 14. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Standoff at Duncan apartment ends peacefully

Police surround building as homeowner held in apartment by adult son

B.C. Centre for Disease Control maps showing new COVID-19 cases by local health area for the week of April 4-10. (BCCDC image)
Parksville-Qualicum passes Nanaimo in new COVID-19 cases

Greater Victoria had more new cases than any other Island area: B.C. Centre for Disease Control

A woman wears a protective face covering to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 as she walks past the emergency entrance of Vancouver General Hospital in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Top doctor warns B.C.’s daily cases could reach 3,000 as COVID hospitalizations surge

There are more than 400 people in hospital, with 125 of them in ICU

The plane blasted through an airport fence and down a hill, before stopping before a cement barrier on Highway 5A, right in front of a school bus. Photo submitted.
Student pilot crashes plane onto Highway 5A almost hitting school bus

Aircraft hit pavement right in front of school bus

Eight-year-old Piper and her family were raising money to help Guinevere, the bearded dragon, get a gynecological surgery. Sadly, the reptile didn’t survive the procedure. (Jackee Sullivan/Special to Langley Advance Times)
Lizard fails to survive surgery, GoFundMe dollars help Langley family offset medical bills

Guinevere, a pet bearded dragon, underwent an ovariectomy on Tuesday

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A driver stopped by Saanich police following a road rage incident on April 15 was found to be impaired, in violation of a license restriction and in a damaged vehicle. They received a 90-day driving prohibition and a 30-day vehicle impound. (Saanich Police Traffic Safety Unit/Twitter)
Road rager fails breathalyzer on busy B.C. highway in vehicle he shouldn’t be driving

Saanich police say man was operating vehicle without required ignition lock

The family of Iris McNeil, shown here with members of her family, has launched a petition to deny parole for the man who murdered McNeil in 1997. (Family photo)
Family fights killer’s release from Vancouver Island prison

Shortreed serving an indeterminate sentence at William Head Institution

B.C. Premier John Horgan wears a protective face mask to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. Premier John Horgan booked to get AstraZeneca shot Friday

‘Let’s show all British Columbians that the best vaccine is the one that’s available to you now,’ he said

Doses of the Moderna COVID‑19 vaccine in a freezer trailer, to be transported to Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Pfizer to increase vaccine deliveries in Canada as Moderna supply slashed

Moderna plans to ship 650,000 doses of its vaccine to Canada by the end of the month, instead of the expected 1.2 million

Dr. Bonnie Henry speaks about the province’s COVID-19 vaccine plans during a news conference at the legislature in Victoria. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
P.1 variant likely highest in B.C. due to more testing for it: Dr. Henry

Overall, just under 60% of new daily cases in the province involve variants

Most Read