Tuesday, January 13, 2009

New vs. Established Daylilies

Blogger would not let me post this morning, no matter what I tried, so I'm sneaking a little time now to get something up. I don't have the fern book here and am working on the daylily photo page for the website, so a few thoughts on hemerocallis this afternoon.
When you first plant a new daylily, I had always heard that you should cut off any scape as it might weaken the plant. I used to do it (well not all the time), but I think that as long as you don't let it set seed, you're probably all right. What I wanted to show is how different the blooms on new plants are from those on established ones. The photo above is of Watchyl Protean Spider the first year it bloomed. Not sure if this was the year we planted it or the next year.
This is the same plant last summer. You would hardly recognize it. I have occasionally had customers who were disappointed about the flower on a new plants, or were sure I had sent them the wrong thing. I guess I should keep these two photos together to show people who don't understand that new plants have to settle in to start to look like themselves. I find this especially true of daylilies, but I also see it to some extent in hostas where the crinkling often takes 3 or more years to get established.
Back to ferns tomorrow.


Sylvia (England) said...

Jane, I am pleased that blogger kept you out! It resulted in an interesting post. This has made me think, I am sure I have had plants that have disappointed me in the first year but unless a picture was taken I forget. They are either get dug up or given another chance and I don't notice that they are better in the second years. I have been so cross about getting the wrong plant that I have threated only to buy in flower - but with some genus this isn't going to help. This needs thinking about! But it is one of the reason I love plants.

Enjoying the fern posts. Best wishes Sylvia (England)

Frances said...

Hi Jane, I was directed here by Sylvia on Blotanical since I grow many daylilies. I agree that the flowers can look very different, sometimes it is the light of the sun causing the difference, but new plants do seem a little less robust in color. I cannot bear to cut off the scapes of newly purchased plants though, too heartbreaking! :-)
Frances at Fairegarden

spookydragonfly said...

The Daylily is my absolute favorite flower. I've never cut the scapes off my new plants, maybe I should. Interesting post!