Helping You Become a More Successful Gardener
Mark A. Miller
There are approximately 18 species of daylily, the common name given to most plants in this genus. This liliaceous group of herbaceous perennials is greatly loved by gardeners, breeders and growers alike, which explains why there are approximately 60,000 registered cultivated varieties in existence. Hemerocallis can be evergreen, semi-evergreen or deciduous and most species originate from the temperate regions of China, Japan and Korea.
The plants are clump-forming and some spread via rhizomes (lateral underground stems). All have long green strap-like leaves that arch gracefully. The clumps and the leaves vary considerably in size, depending on the species and variant.
The flowers of cultivated forms are highly variable in shape and color. Floral forms include spider, star, circular and triangular-shaped flowers. There are also doubles and a wide variety of other unusual forms. All have six tepals (a term for the flower’s showy petal-like sepals). The blooms are usually held above the foliage on branched leafless stems. Each bloom opens for one day and is usually followed by another bud opening on the stem. Some flowers open at dawn and close at dusk; some are open for more than 16 hours and a few open in the late afternoon and stay open until dawn. Bloom time is variable depending on the species or cultivar, but most are summer blooming. There are early, mid and late flowering varieties as well as re-blooming cultivars. Flower color may be in shades of orange, yellow, red, purple, pink or cream and green.
All daylilies are easy to grow if provided full to part sun, and average soil with average drainage. Deciduous daylilies are the hardiest and survive in the coldest reaches of their range; however they may struggle in areas with mild winters. Evergreen types grow well in all but the most tropical regions but require protection when temperatures drop well below freezing. Daylily clumps slowly spread over time and need to be divided every two to three years. Enjoy these tried and true ornamentals in mixed beds and borders and large mass plantings. Smaller cultivars work well in containers.
12 - 2
3 - 10
1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
Full Sun, Partial Sun
Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline
Clay, Loam, Sand
Container, Edging, Foundation, Mixed Border
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