Daylily

daylily1

The former owner of our house planted a few of the “ditch” Daylilies next to our back porch.  I’m talking about the common type, the orange and yellow ones you see growing along the road.  At first, they were pretty, and it did not cost me anything to divide them and spread them around the back yard.  Ten years later, the perimeter of the yard was pretty much clogged with Daylilies.  Towards the end of the summer, the leaves would wilt and the flower stalks would turn brown.  They did not seem quite so attractive then.  Over the years, I removed the majority of them and gave them away to anyone who would take them, replacing them with other perennials a few at a time.  This week, I dug out the last of them from the back yard, though it is impossible to get them all.  Come spring, I’m sure some of them will return.  

daylily3Daylily is the common name for the genus Hemerocallis, which comes from Greek words for Beauty and Day.  This refers to the fact that each Daylily flower only lasts for one day.  Some species are used in cooking, but others are not edible. Though there are around 60,000 registered cultivars of Daylily, only a few have a scent. Daylilies can be found in almost every color, with the exception of blue and black. One of the most sold perennials in the world, they can adapt to many different growing conditions. In the United States, they can be grown in every hardiness zone from zone 1 to zone 11. Daylilies require very little care, and do not have many insect pests. They spread underground with a dense root system, apparently too easily, as some states consider them a noxious weed.

daylily2I still have several varieties of dwarf Daylily out in the front yard.  These are only about half as tall, bloom early in the summer, and then again in the fall, and don’t seem to spread.  After many years, they still come up reliably every spring, and provide lovely pink, purple and yellow blooms. I may have lost my admiration for the common Daylilies, but the dwarf Daylilies will be welcome in my yard for as long as they last.

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One Response to “Daylily”

  1. Kem Says:

    I admit to day lilies! I put them on the side of the drive way opposite of our house, because I figured the doofus (you should see this guy) next door could not do much to kill them off when he is attacking his lawn! I’ve seen humming birds eat from them, but not so often as from other flowers.

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