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Willow Brook Acres
2008 Introductions

Linda's Great Gardener's Soap Available with your daylily order, no extra shipping for up to 4 bars. $4.00 each

click the soap for more information

Inventory List
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Willow Brook Acres
About Us

Gentle Shepherd

Gentle Shepherd
Near White

Said to be the whitest daylily. It is a diploid introduced 1980

Night Wings

Near Black
Said to be the blackest daylily. It is a Tetraploid introduced 1985

Make Plant Tags
from aluminum cans

See The Daylily
Roots
Proliferation
Seed Pod

Parts of a daylily

How To Plant
A Daylily


Garden Tips and

Links

Find Your Plant Hardiness
Zone

  

HIGHLAND LORD
Highland Lord
A Double Red


TRADE LAST

Trade Last
A Large Flower "Bagel"

 

LADY NEVA
Lady Neva
Unusual Form

RED RAIN

Spider Form

The Double Fan
A NEWSY DAYLILY GARDENING LETTER 
ABOUT DAYLILIES AT WILLOW BROOK ACRES

© Copyright policy

for...Love of The Daylily

Garden Visit 2008

 

What is A Daylily?

What's the difference... between a daylily and a lily?

When you hear the word "daylily" do you think about the tall, white, sweet smelling flower commonly seen growing in pots at Easter time? If you do you aren't alone. A daylily, however, is not a lily.

The lily is from the genus Lilium and family Liliaceae.  It grows from a bulb similar to a tulip bulb, both looking a lot like the common onion. They are planted about 6" deep during spring or fall. The flower buds form on top of a tall stalk of feather like leaves. The one similarity between the lily and the daylily is its trumpet shaped flowers.

The daylily is a true perennial from the genus Hemerocallis and family Hemerocallidaceae.  It does not grow from a bulb. The roots grow in a clump.  The leaves are grass like and grow from the crown of the root mass which is no more than an inch under the soil.  Flower buds form on stems called "scapes" which shoot up within the fountain of leaves. The mature daylily clump produces many scapes, each with a cluster of buds that open one by one into bloom.
Parts of a daylily HERE

Hemerocallis means, "beauty for a day." Individual flowers only last one day, thus the name "daylily." While the life of a single blossom is short lived, the number of scapes and buds give the illusion of a long blooming flower.

Daylilies for the ordinary gardener.

Willow Brook Acres is proud to be the kind of daylily grower that loves to sell to the ordinary gardener.  We have a large selection of moderately priced, true division daylilies. Some are lower priced than the same daylily bought in a local garden center. We believe a daylily priced as a bare root, field grown division is a better value over the small, tissue cultured, greenhouse fans potted up at a local garden center at 2 or 3 times the price.   

We also grow newer cultivars for the gardener that wants something new and different in their garden.  Garden centers don't usually grow the latest daylily cultivars.

This year, 2007, we have registered and are pleased to introduce for sale our hybrid daylilies.  These new cultivars have proven to be hardy, to increase and grow well in our zone 5 climate.  Check out our Introductions. 

How to buy...

Choosing your first daylily is easy. You buy what you like. Daylilies are available through specialized growers, such as Willow Brook Acres. Or they are found growing in pots beside other perennials at local nurseries and plant sellers. The identification tag that comes with the potted daylily will tell you the color, height, and bloom season. Sometimes there is a picture of the bloom. You will also find a registered name.

When daylilies are registered they are given a unique, friendly name which distinguishes one cultivar from another with its particular set of characteristics. It is a friendly name because it is plain English. For example, "Whimsical," "Anna" or "Stroke of Midnight," to name a few.

A grower can help you select your daylily by asking you a simple question. "What is your favorite color?" In addition, if you are adding to an established perennial border, you may want to select a certain plant height and bloom season for your perennial border. At Willow Brook Acres Web Site, just click on the name of a particular daylily to see its color and form. Then check the written description next to the name for height and bloom season.

...and grow the daylily

The daylily is called "the perfect perennial" because it is beautiful but easy to grow. They aren't fussy plants and they don't require hard to remember growing conditions. Just remember a few simple rules of good gardening. (1) Good soil gives the best results. (2) More sunlight produces the most bloom, and (3) all plants need adequate water.

While daylilies are drought tolerant, they prefer moist well drained soil. Normally they do not require extra watering, but newly divided or transplanted daylilies should be watered to keep them moist if the weather is dry.

Good garden loam is soil that is not hard or heavy clay. If you can turn the soil to loosen it, then plunge your fingers deep into the earth to grab a handful of the dirt, you probably have adequate soil to start with. Try a simple test. Squeeze the handful of slightly moist dirt into a compressed ball. If it easily crumbles again with a little pressure, your soil is good.

To improve and lighten the soil for the best possible results, mix in a generous amount of organic peat moss or compost and commercial, packaged cow manure.  Raw cow manure should be composted for about a year before using as a fertilizer. Fresh manure can burn plants.

Top dress your established daylily beds with fresh compost and a little of the decomposed cow manure. Loosen the soil around the individual plants, working the top dressing a few inches in to the soil.

Daylilies require very little care on a day to day basis in the garden. To keep your garden tidy you will want to clip any dead leaves and remove the spent flower scapes. Any seed pods that form should be removed unless you intend to grow daylilies from seed. Also daylilies may need to be divided every 3-4 years.

A daylily will flourish on the shady side of your house as well as in the sunniest location. But remember the rule, more sun produces more bloom in some cases.  Some daylily colors are better with a a little after noon shade. In the hottest southern states some growers construct shade houses, a mesh cloth tarp type structure to keep the daylilies from being stressed from the intense sun.  Shade is important for hybridizers to set seeds on some pod parent plants.

Tip: For some reason a daylily  that doesn't seem to be vigorous in one garden spot may benefit from being moved to another location.

Caring for the Daylily

  • Daylilies in the garden need little special care, just good gardening practices. You will want to tidy up around your daylilies to keep your garden looking well kept and to give them good conditions to flourish in. Loosen compacted soil around the established daylily.  To keep it loosened work in a top dressing of well composted organic matter or organic mulch material. 
  • Some gardeners like the ease and convenience of a granular fertilizer. I use a balanced 10-10-10 granular slow release sparingly in early spring.  Go easy on nitrogen rich fertilizers.  Nitrogen is the first number in the formula.  Too much nitrogen will grow too many leaves.  You want bloom not foliage.  Later in Summer you can fertilize with something like 6-6-10,  4-8-12 or similar formulation.  We do not fall feed in our zone 5 garden but we do improve the soil with compost and mulches for the next year. 
  • Daylilies may need to be divided every 3-5 years depending on how fast the plant increases. When dividing becomes necessary it is a good time to enrich the soil as described in the above paragraphs. A daylily that no longer gives you as many bloom as it once did may need to be divided. Some older foliage will die back or become brown and yellowed. Usually that will be the lower leaves. Just cut away any unsightly foliage.
  • Daylilies don't need to be deadheaded to encourage more bloom. But the bloom from the previous day may not fall away neatly. A pass through your garden, picking off any spent bloom will make your garden look well manicured. Some daylily varieties seem to discard yesterdays bloom better than others. When removing the spent bloom, be careful not to snap off young buds.  To encourage bloom and to prevent unnecessary stress on your daylily plant, remove any seed pods that may develop from bee or wind pollination. Click here to see a seed pod
  • Watch for proliferations that sometimes grow on a scape. Proliferations are new plants that will bloom identical to the mother plant. Let them mature on the scape until they start to form little white protrusions along the bottom that will become roots. Then cut it from the scape by snipping or cutting just above where it is attached and just below.  But don't prolifs for too long or they will dry up.  Root in moist potting soil or keep moist in your garden.  You can also root proliferations by putting it in enough plain water to cover where the roots are forming. When roots have grown, plant directly in your garden or in a container. 

What's A Double Fan?

When you buy a freshly dug, bare root daylily, the division that has a root, crown and foliage, is called a "fan." A single fan resembles a leek or green onion. A "double fan" is a generous root division that has two green  "fans."  If, however, you order from a commercial catalog supplier instead of a daylily grower, the price is usually for a small single daylily root.  
    
multiple fans

 "Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these." KJV St. Luke 12:27

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Last updated January 28, 2008

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