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The Daylily Show

August 8, 2019

daylily season entrance gardenDaylilies have been putting on an amazing show in much of New England this summer. Our rainy weather in May and June seems to have provided Hemerocallis plants with just the right amount of extra moisture during a critical stage of their growth, and they responded with a profusion of flower buds.

I was especially thrilled that this has been such a great year for daylilies because I included more than fifty daylily plants, including at least thirty varieties new to my garden, in my big front slope planting last fall. Almost all of these bloomed the first year in my garden.

The daylilies peaked last week and are now starting to decline. I still have a few varieties that have not yet begun to bloom, but some of my early bloomers are now finished with their flowering. This seems like a good time to share the daylily show I have been enjoying. Because the array of daylilies blooming in my garden is dizzying, I have focused on those in the front garden.

We’ll start along the walkway that runs from the front house entrance to the patio (shown above). Here the daylilies grow in shades of pink and lavender. (If you hold the cursor over the image, you’ll see a list of the daylily varieties pictured.)

entrance garden daylilies

The side slope, which runs down the hillside from the walkway planting to the driveway, has a palette of soft peaches and yellows.

side slope daylilies

The sunny front slope is where I have indulged a love of hot colors. It is planted primarily in reds, oranges, strong yellows, purples and hot pinks. I’ve divided these daylilies into three groups, the first representing the left side of the slope, the second focusing on the center of the slope, and the third representing the right side of the slope.

front slope daylilies1

front slope daylilies2

front slope daylilies3

Finally, let me leave you with an image of how all those hot color daylilies combine with the other plants around them. I’m imagining how this will look in a year or two, when the plants grow into larger clumps, filling in the spaces between them. I’m looking forward to more big daylily shows in the years to come.

Front slope hot colors

7 Comments leave one →
  1. August 8, 2019 10:32 pm

    What a collection you have, Jean! My favorites are those with green touches at their throats.
    Water does seem to be critical to flowering, which may be why the performance of my own daylilies is generally so-so. Mine are normally done by June but perhaps I need to mark my calendar to give them extra water in April in the future if Mother Nature doesn’t come through on rain. Long-term forecasts are already suggesting that we may have a stingy supply of precipitation again this coming winter.

    • August 14, 2019 8:04 pm

      Kris, I’ve been thinking the same thing — that I should make a note to water them in May and again in June if we don’t have lots of rain. I am also partial to the green throats. Happily, the Maine daylily breeders Joseph and Nick Barth, whose creations are well-represented in my garden, also seem to have been partial to green throats.

  2. August 10, 2019 3:06 pm

    Great selection of daylilies! I especially like Roland’s Choice. And Ben Kirk reminds me of Eye-yi-yi.

    • August 14, 2019 8:06 pm

      Jason, I have always loved orange, so it’s been great to have an opportunity to add lots of orange flowers to my garden. Ben Kirk blooms between two plants of Rocket City, and I really like the combination.

  3. August 12, 2019 1:14 am

    Daylilies are so much more popular in New England and the East. They are very easy to grow here, but unpopular. The more popular sort are not as interesting as those grown in the East. How odd. Don’t they need protection in the winter?

    • August 14, 2019 8:10 pm

      Tony, Daylilies are one of those relatively rare plants that are both cold hardy and heat tolerant; the original Asian species grow in hardiness zones 2-9. Easy to grow here as long as the soil is well-drained. They don’t require winter protection, and they don’t wilt in the worst of our summer heat. You are right that they are very popular plants in New England. I wonder if their sudden flush of blooms after weeks of anticipation resonates particularly well with our four-season climate.

      • August 16, 2019 12:20 am

        With a good dormant season, they may actually perform better than they do here, were they do not get much time off.

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