Full disclosure: I’m a big fan of daylilies.
But I understand why some people think they’re highly overrated. Their blooms last only a day, and then they can look a bit scraggly the rest of the season.
And, I admit, they’re certainly over-used. In the Midwest, daylilies (Hemerocallis) seem to be the plant of choice for commercial landscapes, probably because they need little maintenance, and they can withstand a fair amount of abuse.
But those are also good reasons to use them in the home landscape, plus their blooms are beautiful! And with tens of thousands of cultivars from which to choose, you’ll never run out of options. The key is to use daylilies judiciously and to plant ones that vary in bloom times.
In my garden, they’re in mixed beds with bee balm, sedum, shrub roses, clematis, bell flowers and various annuals. After they’ve bloomed, I take the time to remove the flower stems; if they’re left in place, they turn brown fairly quickly and don’t look attractive.
Daylilies are also survivors. I’ve yet to lose a daylily to anything—not diseases, insects or sub-zero temperatures.
My friend Gayle is also a daylily fan. Check out some of the gorgeous cultivars that just bloomed in her stunning gardens!
Then tell me your verdict on daylilies: Thumbs up or thumbs down?
‘Fairy Tale Pink’
‘Hush Little Baby’
Photos by Gayle Cooner.
Kathy Childers is editor-in-chief of Gardening How-To magazine. She gardens in St. Paul, Minnesota.