The humble border Daylily should be coming
into bloom now, but perhaps it isn't as humble as you first thought?
In America dedicated breeders have produced a great deal of new and
exciting varieties. The Daylily has been through an enormous
transformation and is now available in a range of colours from the deepest
reds and purples all the way through yellow and pinks to nearly pure
white. About the only colour you can't get is blue, but breeders are bound
to be working on it and there are some good blue tinted lavenders
available. As well as singles there are now double flowered varieties and
blooms can be over 8" across. The size of the plants is also now very
varied from big tall 4 footers to dainty 12" high plants that are ideal
for pots and containers on the patio. Many varieties flower perpetually
all summer long and a lot are evergreen so you still have foliage in
winter. The one word for daylillies is diversity - there is a place for
one variety or another in any garden and if you're into collecting plants,
you'd better watch out, they're addictive!
The American plantsmen caught on to the charms of this plant some years
ago and today it now rivals the popularity of the rose in their gardens.
They are also very popular in Australia and NewZealand, South Africa and
much of Europe. This in itself is a tribute to the plant and its
adaptability to a variety of climates. They're as tough as old boots!
Daylilies can be grown in almost any position except deep shade, on any
reasonable garden soil as long as they are not waterlogged, having said
this they look great beside ponds.
With all these factors in their favour it is hardly surprising that there
are countless breeders trying to improve upon this already beautiful
flower and that the very newest varieties change hands for several hundred
dollars each in the states. Obviously, this price is a little out of
average gardeners' league, but prices in this country are still pretty
high for many of the new varieties, due to their scarcity. £40 each or
more is not uncommon however, but some of the slightly older varieties,
which have been available for five or ten years, are more reasonably
© 2000 Chris Bonnett - Gardening Express