Thursday, February 28, 2008

Desired Daylily

It probably happens in every gardening niche, that burning desire to own the hard to find, greatly desired, priced out of this world, newer cultivar. I find myself jumping on the bandwagon from time to time.

It reminds me of the early days of the cabbage patch doll, when everyone wanted one, but there weren't enough to go around.

For those highly coveted hard to find daylilies, their scarcity tends to drive up their value to unbelievable amounts for a plant. I've seen some daylilies sold at auction well into the thousands of dollars for just a single fan. Unbelievable, but true!

Daylilies ARE desired!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Newly Rooted Daylily Seedlings

Newly rooted daylily seedlings in a damp coffee filter, fresh out of their little baggie. They have gotten a little bigger than I would have liked before planting, however it's still easy to plant them at this size.It's very important not to break the root, as they probably won't survive if this happens.I like to wait until my seeds germinate before planting them.Its just my personal preference.Others may prefer to sow directly in the dirt.Either way is acceptable.
Take a closer look at the little furry root (click on picture for closer view).

Monday, February 25, 2008

Bluegrass Music X Destined To See

Bluegrass Music
Destined To See

This cross was made in Jan/08 inside the house. Although they haven't been in a greenhouse, some of my daylily plants rewarded me with blooms this winter, allowing me to continue to dabble in my seed making throughout the winter months.I am looking forward to this cross with great anticipation:).

Spider Daylilies

Orchid Waterfall

A daylily whose petal length is 4x it's petal width is referred to as a spider.

I own a few spiders, and do enjoy them. They make quite an impression when in bloom.They seem to stand out from the crowd in my garden, with their unique spidery presence.

Friday, February 22, 2008

What's In A Daylily Name: ll

Freudian Slip
Self Determination
As a professional in the field of mental health, I found myself attracted to daylilies which were close to my heart: Freudian Slip, Therapeutic Touch, Borderline Crazy, Self Determination, Lucid Moment, and Guided By Voices.The association was just too cool!

There are so many physical characteristics which make each daylily special, but as a collector, I have to admit that daylily names also have meaning for me:).

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

What's In A Daylily Name: l

San Simean

When I purchased my first daylilies, I was attracted by the color, form, hardiness, and what blended best with my garden. I tossed the tag which held the registered name, and rather, just registered in my mind the name of the plant- "daylily".

What I didn't realize at that time was that each name tag that I had tossed held the key to identifying the characteristics of each particular cultivar, as well as the key to the family background (helpful when hybridizing or collecting). Since I've learned the significance, I've never tossed another tag:).

Friday, February 15, 2008

Daylilies in Zone 5

Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, planted in a protected spot.

Not all daylilies are equally hardy.

Although attracted to many southern hybrid daylilies, I find myself wondering if I'm willing to take the gamble .My more expensive tender cultivars are planted either along the foundation in a protected area, or have been brought inside.I have recently lost a new southern introduction, Wedding Gown, after a fall planting in a pot.Brought it inside after one month in the cold, however it did not recover:(.It was definitely a learning experience!

My First Beautiful Seedling(I'm Biased of course:))

maiden bloom

One of several first seedlings to bloom.It was an amazing experience! I photographed it throughout the day, and showed it to everyone who stopped by ,including all the kid's friends. Let's just say, my own kids were not too impressed:), however they accepted that their mom was excited, and that she thought that something special had just occured.

Pure and Simple x Spectral Elegance

Shores Of Time Seedling

This seedling bloomed last summer,on a one year old plant .It had a pretty bloom, and is definitely worth keeping for now.I was surprised at the color, as both parents are pink (but then again, I'm just an amateur:))

Shores Of Time x Leslie Renee

Thursday, February 14, 2008


Heron x Daring Deception seedlings below

I love this daylily. It was my first tetraploid, and my first hybridizing subject. It's an old and hardy cultivar with strong scapes, budcount>30, dormancy, and a beautiful coral color.It has an old fashioned shape, but I love that about it. It's extremely fertile, and I've crossed it with some southern daylilies to bring northern hardiness to the seedlings.

The seeds are always big and PLUMP! Some of the biggest I've hybridized.

To the left are two samples of seedlings from my very first crosses of Heron x Daring Deception.

Hemerocallis Fulva

A species of hemerocallis native to Asia, it is a prolific wild daylily commonly found in ditches and along roadsides in North America. Also known as the "ditch lily", it can become invasive in the garden. It's an infertile triploid daylily which does not set seed, but rather spreads by rhizomes underground.

I have it in my garden, and I still enjoy it. So far it has not become invasive, and remains in one spot, but I'm keeping my eye on it.

Toothy Edges

Golden Tentacles
Toothy edges are very exotic in appearance. I didn't like them initially, prefering round and ruffled.Now I prefer toothy and tendriled.

Some edges are serrated like shark's teeth, others are finer and fringed.I have purchased lots of seeds from toothy parents, as some are very difficult to obtain at this point.

Toothy cultivars in my own garden include Golden Tentacles, Forestlake Raggamuffin, Annette's Magic, Love For Jesus, Robes For The Queen, Spiney Sea Urchin, Triassic Teeth, Drink The Light, Eight Miles High, Heavenly Pink Fang, and Barracuda Bay. Expecting Puffer Fish this summer, which I'm very excited about!

Green Edges

Shores Of Time seedling with a light chartreuse edge
A popular new trend in daylilies is the green edge.I must admit, I do find it appealing.I have several green edged cultivars in my garden that I hope will bloom this summer,including Holy Guacamole, and Granny Smith.I found that Moment In The Sun had a definite green edge on rebloom.It's the pod parent of Granny Smith, and possibly where those green edges came from!
Moment In The Sun (left and below).

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

A Purple Tendriled Daylily

Bluegrass Music( not tendriled- read below)
One night I dreamed about a daylily edged with long purple tendrils. No doubt I had mixed a version of another type of flower, perhaps a cornflower, with my dreams of daylilies.

As time went on I discovered that there actually were exotically edged daylilies, and found myself attracted to these toothy and tendril edged varieties.

Perhaps one day I will be able to hybridize the purple tendriled daylily of my dreams:).Perhaps Bluegrass Music (above) x ?Golden Tentacles. Stay tuned!

Destined To See

I absolutely love the eye of daylily Destined To See. I've crossed it with Blue Grass Music this year. Should have some potential daylily beauties from this cross.

Spectral Elegance Seedling

One of my first daylily seedlings to open was this Spectral Elegance seedling. I watched it every day for a week, and wondered if it would ever open. It was ruffled on both petals and sepals, had a beautiful diamond dusted surface, and exquisite coloring. It was planted the year before, and multiplied to 4 fans this past summer.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Blue Eyed Pinks

Doyle Pierce

I love blue eyed pinks! A lot of my crosses this summer were with this color combination. I used Doyle Pierce extensively, crossing it with my hardy seedlings ,as well as Blue Eyes Glance and Alien Contact.

I was fortunate enough to purchase Tet Lavender Blue Baby this year, however had no luck with pollen or pod fertility .Hopefully once it settles in it will demonstrate better fertility.


A first year seedling with wonderful substance!
I first learned to hybridize several years ago ,on a notion , after reading about the process in a gardening magazine. It seemed simple enough. Take some pollen from the stamen of one daylily, and dab it to the pistol of the one you wanted to cross it with.

A very simple technique it was, and also very intriguing! As I watched the tiny pods developing from my first crosses, I wondered what the resulting hybrid daylilies would look like. Each seed contained within the pods had unique genetic material. Each seed had the potential of becoming a new daylily plant. Some would be similar to their parents, some would be different, and some might be extremely unique.

I was hooked after the first attempt. Who would have thought someone could become so passionate about daylilies? Just give it a try for yourself, and watch the magic begin!