The daylily “Happy Returns” (Hemerocallis “Happy Returns”) gets its name from the way its buttery yellow flowers bloom continuously from May until frost. With joyful, fragrant, 3″ flowers, it’s ideal for a perennial bed, garden border, or container and will make your day. Daylilies are among the most straightforward plants to grow, and “Happy Returns” pays off handsomely with continuous blooms. Pollinator-friendly and resistant to deer and rabbits
Do daylilies bloom again?
Even in drought-like conditions, daylilies will continue to bloom year after year with little maintenance. Here’s how to grow daylilies in your garden and take care of them, including cleaning up at the end of the growing season and dividing after flowering.
The daylily is an incredibly low-maintenance (nearly no upkeep), easy-to-grow perennial that can withstand drought, irregular sunlight, and poor soil. It is also virtually disease- and pest-free. Additionally, there are a huge variety of stunning daylilies available. Daylilies can bloom from late spring until the first October frost if you combine early, mid-season, late blossoming kinds, and repeat bloomers.
Hemerocallis, the daylily’s botanical name, derives from the Greek words hemera (“day”) and kallos (“beauty). The name fits because each flower only blooms for a day.
Daylilies, despite their name, are not “genuine lilies, which have fleshy roots. True lilies, which include Asiatic and Oriental lilies, are of the genus Lilium and grow from onion-like bulbs. In the case of daylilies, the flowers develop on stems devoid of leaves, which are referred to as “scapes that protrude above the vegetation. A mature plant can have four to six scapes, each of which bears 12–15 buds, giving the plant a lengthy bloom period.
When a daylily variety is listed with a height, it refers to how long the scape is. Some people grow as tall as 6 feet!
Choosing and Preparing a Planting Site
- Daylilies can thrive in less-than-ideal situations, but they thrive in full sun and a location with healthy, well-drained soil.
- Avoid planting close to trees and bushes that will compete with it for nutrients and moisture.
- Before planting, amend the soil with old manure or compost to enhance the amount of organic matter.
How to Plant Daylilies
- Create a hole that is roomy enough for the roots to grow.
- The plant’s crown, where the roots and leaves converge, needs to be buried approximately an inch deep.
- Soil should be added, then lightly packed down all around the plant.
- Water until the soil is well moistened.
How to Care for Daylilies
However, if you want these flowers to thrive and perform at their best, here’s how to give them a little TLC. Daylilies require little to no maintenance and can even live when left unattended.
- Once a week until they become established, water newly planted daylilies.
- Daylilies can live without water since they are relatively resistant and drought tolerant. They do, however, prefer about an inch of water every week, which typical rainfall will provide in large part. They will reward you with extra blooms if you water them during a dry spell or in a dry climate. To assist prevent weeding and keep the plant moist, add mulch around it.
- As long as the soil is moderately fertile, daylilies don’t need fertilizer. A small amount of all-purpose fertilizer (10-10-10) applied once a year in the early spring as fresh daylily top grow appears, however, can promote higher bloom performance. At the base of each daylily clump, scatter a few handfuls and water if necessary. If you’d like to encourage your daylilies to grow more quickly in the future, you can fertilize them again after they’ve completed blooming.
- Deadheading is not required, but you can encourage more blooming by removing old blooms and preventing the development of seeds. As soon as you notice them fading, simply cut off their blossoms. The majority of daylilies don’t self-sow; you have to divide them to produce new plants (see how below).
- A daylily scape can be completely trimmed back to the ground as soon as the blooms on it have finished blooming, in the fall, or not at all. It will simply turn brown and keep standing if you don’t trim it back.
- However, before new growth begins in the spring, remove the dead leaves from the previous year’s growth in the early spring.
- In the spring, amend the soil surrounding the plants with compost or old manure.
Dividing and Transplanting Daylilies
Daylilies can expand quickly and will probably need to be divided at some point (usually every 3 to 5 years). Dividing plants will not only stop their spread but also give them new life, producing better and more frequent blooms.
How to divide daylilies is as follows:
- Even though soil can be worked at any time, it is recommended to divide daylilies shortly after they have completed blooming. Note: Before winter, the plants require at least 6 weeks to establish themselves again.
- Take out the entire root mass.
- As much soil as you can from the roots. To remove extra soil, soak the roots in a pail of water.
- Identify the plant’s crown. Split it into smaller clumps beginning at the edge (usually 3 to 4 per plant). Each clump need to have a few leaves and sound roots.
- Reduce the length of the leaves by about a third of their original size (5 to 6 inches, generally).
- Replant and give it plenty of water.
There are plenty lovely daylilies to pick from! To have daylilies bloom from late spring into fall, combine early, mid-season, late flowering kinds, and repeat bloomers.
Daylily blossoms can be fragrant and are available in a wide range of hues. While some flowers have wide petals with ruffled edges, others have full, rounded petals. The daylilies known as “spiders” have a form resembling a spider, while “doubles” have twice as many petals and sepals. Some modern varieties even bloom at night and have strong fragrances.
Some of our preferred cultivars are:
- ‘Stella de Oro’ blooms all summer long and has several yellow flowers on each scape.
- Early in the summer, the little purple flowers of “Little Grapette” bloom. Only 12 inches tall, this daylily.
- Flowers on “So Sweet” are yellow. Its leaves stay green throughout the winter.
- ‘Ruby Spider’ boasts broad, scarlet-red blooms with golden throats that can reach a width of up to 9 inches.
- ‘Catherine Woodbury’ produces fragrant lavender-pink flowers in mid- to late summer.
- ‘Indian Giver’ blooms from early to late summer and features enormous, deep purple flowers. It is largely evergreen.
- Early to midsummer brings out the fragrant, double, salmon-pink blooms of “Siloam Double Classic.” This is perfect for containers.
The growing season is when reblooming daylilies can be found:
“Happy Returns,” “Mini Stella,” and “Good Fairy”
The leaves of evergreen daylilies stay green throughout the winter:
“Joan Senior,” “So Sweet,” and “Wind Frills”
Looking for a particular shade? No issue! Here are a few options:
- “Lullaby Baby,” “Chicago Candy Cane,” and “Halls Pink” are all pink.
- Mountain Violet, Velvet Shadows, and Summer Wine are examples of lavender/purple flowers.
- Red: “Red Mittens,” “Oriental Ruby,” and “Hearts Afire”
- Orange: “By Myself,” “Rocket City,” and “Carrot Top”
- Yellow: “Paradise Prince,” “Lemon Lollypop,” and “Mini Stella”
- Crispin, Ice Carnival, May May, and “So Lovely” are all in white.
Using Daylilies as Cut Flowers
Daylilies, especially the heirloom varieties, can create lovely cut flowers. Individual blooms only last a day, but buds can stay up to a week indoors before they start to open.
- The secret is to cut daylilies when the buds are just beginning to open and some of the blossom color is visible. As the buds at the bottom fade, the buds higher above will open.
- As soon as you have the flowers inside, use a sharp knife to make a diagonal cut that is about an inch long to trim the stem ends.
- Water should be changed every few days.
- New buds will open when the faded blooms are removed every day.
- Daylilies were first domesticated in Asia and are not indigenous to North America. They were brought to Europe by explorers, and then North America by early colonists.
- Common orange-red daylilies (H. fulva), which create eye-catching borders alongside rural roads, are also known as roadside lilies, outhouse lilies, ditch lilies, and tawny daylilies.
- If a daylily blossom opens later or shuts earlier than usual (opens at 7:00 a.m., closes at 7:00 p.m.), look for rain, according to weather lore.
- The daylily’s entire body can be consumed. You can eat the delicate leaf as a spring green. You can consume the buds and blossoms raw or in soups. You can boil and eat the swelling parts of the root. More information is provided below.
The flower buds may become prey for aphids and thrips. To repel them, use insecticidal soap or powerful water sprays.
Daylilies have a lengthy culinary history and are edible. The fragile leaves was used as a spring green, the buds and blossoms were consumed raw and added to soups, and the enlarged portions of the root were cooked and consumed. When cooked in stews, soups, or sauces, all sections have a mild peppery flavor and serve as a thickening factor.
- Try frying some butter and garlic to cook some daylily blooms. They have a flavor that is a cross between asparagus and green peas.
- Daylily buds are deep-fried after being covered in a thin batter. You may add salt to make a wonderful summer treat!
Should daylilies be pruned back for the winter?
Use sheers to trim down leaves once they have turned brown in the fall or after the first frost. Cut them away from the ground by about an inch (2.5–5 cm). To prevent the transmission of disease, make sure your tools are clean and sanitized before using them on your daylilies. Remove and discard the leaves and scapes you remove as well so they don’t litter the ground and serve as an excellent pest habitat.
If you prune daylilies, will they blossom again?
The length of time varies depending on the variety, however the majority of daylily flowers only bloom for one day. New flowers will often open up each day during the plant’s approximately one to one and a half month-long bloom period. Usually, spent or dead blooms fall off on their own, but any that are still on the plant can be picked off. Deadheading the plant or removing the dead flowers will help the plant produce more blooms.
Daylilies only only a single annual cutback, and pruning is only permitted twice a year. The spring or the fall are the ideal seasons to prune daylilies. What matters most is what you prefer and what is simpler and more practical for you.
How long do daylilies live?
The majority of daylilies (Hemerocallis cvs) bloom year after year without much of your help because they are very dependable and long-lasting plants. However, some types bloom less after five or six years in the ground, even when they receive the same care and thrive in the same conditions. They might completely stop blossoming. This group includes the extremely well-liked “Stella de Oro” daylily, which is the most extensively sold daylily worldwide. After some time, it just stops blooming as it once did. What’s the issue?
The problem is most likely caused by overpopulation if a daylily is no longer blooming well while those around are still doing well despite fertilization, watering, exposure, or other cultural considerations. Not with other plants (most daylilies are capable of competing in that regard! ), but with itself. It has given rise to so many offspring that there are now an abundance of plants occupying the same space and vying with one another for minerals and light. The blossoming is lowered or stopped by this fierce rivalry. That’s all there is to it.
The answer is as straightforward: divide the plant. Perhaps not in the middle of the summer when you first notice the issue, but rather in the fall (at least a month before the first frost) or in the spring when new shoots begin to emerge. This is so that daylilies can divide while they are more or less dormant. (And in the fall, the typical daylily is essentially dormant, although still having leaves.)
To be clear, you can divide a daylily in the summer if you truly want to, but doing so will shock the plant more, making it even more crucial to water it frequently to aid in its full recovery.
Simply dig up the entire plant with a spade and remove the largest root ball you can. You can shear the leaves to 8 inches (20 cm) high before beginning if you do it late in the season (late August or September), which will let you to see what you’re doing more clearly (shearing is not absolutely necessary).
With the spade, cut the plant into two, three, four, or more portions. There must be at least one healthy fan in each sector, ideally three or more. Now, replant each portion with its leaves at the same level as they were before the division, making sure not to bury the crown (the point where the roots and stem converge).
Apply a mulch and water well after the division. Until the plant is well-established, which could take a full year, it will need supplemental watering in times of drought.
No worries if you wind up with too many plants; they make wonderful presents for neighbors and friends!
Your divided daylily will probably flower heavily after being replanted, if not profusely in the first season. Since it is one of those daylilies, it will need to be done again in 5 or 6 years.
Do I need to prune my daylilies in the fall?
The best time to prune daylilies is in the fall, after the leaves have had a complete growing season. While certain varieties of daylilies are evergreen, the majority are herbaceous, which means that their leaves wither in the winter and reappear in the spring. It’s a good idea to remove the dead leaf to keep the yard looking tidy and prevent slugs and other pests from making a home there, unless you have one of the rarer evergreen varieties.
Do daylilies endure the winter?
However, excavating and preserving daylily tubers isn’t a bad idea if you’re worried about your daylily plants over the winter, especially in regions that are north of USDA plant hardiness zone 5. Let’s find out how to care for daylilies in the winter.