From the Garden: Daylilies in Bloom!

By Erin McKenna Breglia

Now that our resident woodchuck family has – hopefully – relocated, we anticipate the return of daylilies in bloom!

Not actually a true lily, a daylily is a flowering perennial in the genus Hemerocallis. It is a hardy and colorful plant that is often hybridized by growers. When given adequate sun, water, and the right care, the daylily can put on quite a show.

The daylilies at Landis are a bountiful part of the Van Loveland Perennial Garden and can be found blooming from early June through late July. We have old tried and true varieties, “spider” daylilies, modern hybrids, and several unidentified specimens. It would not be fair to name a favorite, so here is a list of some of the plants you will find while strolling in the garden:

Hemerocallis ‘Chicago Brave’ and Hemerocallis ‘King of Hearts’. Both of these plants produce 5-5 1/2” red blooms on 24-28” tall scapes (stems). They can be found blooming mid-season and are “diurnal”, denoting more than a single cycle of flowering.

Hemerocallis ‘Russian Rhapsody’ and Hemerocallis ‘Mountain Violet’. Both of these plants produce luscious 5-6” purple blooms on 28-30” scapes, though ‘Russian Rhapsody’ takes its color a bit further. Growing ‘Russian Rhapsody’ in shade it will give it a darker hue; more sun will produce mauve blooms. Both varieties are diurnal. Both have received numerous awards.

Hemerocallis ‘Cartwheels’, Hemerocallis ‘Little Cherub’, and Hemerocallis ‘Beloved Country’. Each of these plants is a shade of yellow, ranging from a pastel peach to a saturated yellow that makes one wonder how flowers get their color! All three are diurnal, older varieties. ‘Cartwheels’ and ‘Beloved Country’ bloom on tall 30-32” scapes mid- to late season, while ‘Little Cherub’ is much smaller, blooming on 19” scapes, very early in the season. ‘Cartwheels’ has 58 documented “child plants” -- a cross between ‘Cartwheels’ and another plant. It has received a multitude of awards since the 1950s.

You can also find a few novel “spider” daylily plants growing in our perennial garden. A spider daylily is one having a flower whose petal length is four or more times the width of the petals. These plants possess yellow, red, or orange blossoms , as well as flowers in blends of all three colors. These plants bloom on tall scapes and rebloom throughout the season.

Daylilies provide color, texture, and shape to any garden. They love water and sun but can tolerate some shade and drought. Mulch and compost will help to keep their roots moist and aerated and a “Plant-Tone” slow-release fertilizer will keep them happily fed. Being very low maintenance, the daylily is a true joy to have in the garden!

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Summer 2023

Volume 41 , Number 2

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