Daylily raised beds were built in Aug & Oct 2017 against a brick wall facing east. Borders were made from fence posts stacked horizontally 4 high (approx. 14 inches) which are connected with lag screws. Each bed has a planting area 24 inches wide. The bed on the left is 22 feet long and 18 feet long on the right. I took soil from existing garden beds to fill up the newly created beds. That soil was vegetable garden soil purchased from Living Earth. On Sep 3rd, 12 daylilies from existing beds & 50 newly purchased daylilies were planted in the bed on the left. On Nov 10th, 24 daylilies from existing beds & 35 newly purchased daylilies were planted in the bed on the right.
Most of the daylilies were purchased from Spring Hill Nurseries. They are planted in three rows. So 2018 is the first blooming season for these newly planted daylilies. There are several advantages to raised beds. You can actually sit on the edge while removing weeds. More importantly, the flowers are much closer to your eyes as you walk by each morning to see which varieties are blooming today.
Each Daylily variety has slightly different blooming characteristics.
Some of my observations are as follows:
- Red/Coral Daylilies: Passion for Red is my favorite. The stalk is very thick and supports 6 to 8 large blooms. Desert Flame also has a beautiful bloom, but the stalk is not a sturdy. Funny Valentine has smaller stalks. Earlybird Cardinal has the weakest stalks of my reddish daylilies. I do like South Seas which has a thicker stalk and supports a 6 to 8 blooms.
- Yellow Daylilies: My favorite flower is Majestic Move, but is has a weak stalk & only supports 2 or 3 blooms. Erin Lea has a beautiful flower and supports more blooms. Elegant Explosion is the most prolific with more sturdy bloom stalks. Its blooms are darker yellow & tend to be smaller. Marquis Moon has a beautiful ruffled light yellow flower, but the stalks are weak and support 2 or 3 flowers.
- White Daylilies: Joan Senior and Early Snow are essentially the same daylily as far as I can see. They both have large flowers & thick stalks that support 6 to 8 blooms. Then again, I've mixed up the varieties in my daylily bed so I may be confused as which variety I planted in each spot.
- Pink Daylilies: Barbara Mitchell is the most beautiful with the way the petals curve outward & the stalks are fairly thick. Pewter Pink is pretty, but has weaker stalks. Elegant Candy is probably my most prolific bloomer of all the daylilies. It is the first to bloom & I have several still blooming in mid July. The stalks support multiple blooms. It's blooms are not as large as say Barbara Mitchell.
- Purple Daylilies: Garden Show has large blooms but relatively weak stalks. The stalks for Always Afternoon & Daring Deception support more blooms. Inwood is pretty in the morning with its purple ruffled edges, but fades in the hot Houston sun. I do prefer its blooms to Exotic Candy.
- Double Daylilies: The double yellow daylily is a gift from a friend. Not sure of the variety's name.
Daylilies in Houston begin blooming in mid April. The peak blooming period
this year was May 15 to June 15. During this time period, I would pick 35 to 40
dead blooms (from the previous day's flowers) each morning. We're down to
5 to 8 blooms a day by mid July. The varieties currently blooming are Passion
for Red, Garden Show, Elegant Candy, Inwood & the yellow double.
Daylily Care - I mixed some Daylily Food in the soil when I planted the daylilies last fall. I water my garden by hand each morning from April through September. This is done daily because the beds are raised and the Texas heat can be oppressive. I do pick off the previous day's blooms each morning. About every 3 days or so I cut down the stalks which have produced all their flowers. Every week or two, I will remove the dead leaves at the base of the daylily plants and pull out the dead stalks. It helps to have raised beds which make maintenance such as weeding, removing dead leaves, etc. much easier.
There's not a lot of difference between some varieties of daylilies. Compare below Daring Deception to Always Afternoon. And lighting makes a big difference. Consider the pictures of the same Majestic Move: one taken in the sunlight in the morning and the other in the shade in the evening. Daylily bloom colors do fade by afternoon, especially in the hot 95 degree Houston summer sun.