day lilies – hemerocallis

8 Jun

Right on schedule, about two weeks after the Stella d’oro lilies bloomed, the rest of the day lilies are beginning to open. They’re not really lilies at all but get their name from the fact that they look like lilies and each flower only opens for one day–but each stem bears multiple buds, so a stand of these will continue to provide flowers for weeks. I don’t know the names of any of these because most of them came to me from a friend who was thinning out her bed and the bulbs were all mixed together. I like them planted in clumps or drifts for maximum color impact, although they can be effective as single specimen plants or in a dense row in front of hedges or along a driveway. About the only care they require is dead heading (pinching off spent blossoms), which should be done every day or so. The flowers will continue to bloom whether you dead head or not, but it makes the bed look more manicured. One of my favorites is the old-fashioned ditch lily. If you’ve ever traveled the rural roads of Illinois, you understand the nickname. Someone probably planted them by the mail box and the rains swept some of the bulbs along the rain ditch to the next farm and the next farm and so on.   They produce lots of flowers on very long stems, and the bright orange color can be seen from far away.There are quite a few varieties that have not yet begun to bloom. That’s the advantage of having an assortment–weeks and weeks of blossoms. I prefer to let the leaves die back gradually (same thing for daffodils). I go in every once in a while and snip off the dead leaves but otherwise leave them alone. During the time that the leaves are fading the plants are producing more bulbs for next year, and I don’t like to interfere with that process.

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2 Responses to “day lilies – hemerocallis”

  1. Leonard Marks July 16, 2012 at 3:36 pm #

    great post

  2. Donna's Garden July 17, 2012 at 12:48 pm #

    Thanks. Come back and visit my garden anytime.

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