Choose a site that has at least 6 hours of sun, away from greedy shrub roots, to achieve superior performance. An ideal way to plant daylilies, is a good mixture of the following: one-third soil, one-third commercial cow or very rich compost, and one-third moist (soaked) Canadian peat. In each 18” x 18” hole, mix at least two cups of Milorganite. Alfalfa is great in small amounts!
The number one secret to growing daylilies that bloom in Florida is not to plant the crowns below the soil line and to dig them up and replant when they have eventually pulled crowns down too deep. That maybe as often as every 3-5 years! The number two secret is to plant the proper cultivars. Dormant daylilies often turn to grass after the first year and eventually disappear in the central and lower areas of our state. Dormant daylilies should be chilled in the winter time. All evergreen and some semi-evergreen daylilies perform outstandingly well if they are planted and nourished correctly. A prepared bed is also a must; native Florida soil is very poor quality for growing anything. Unless growing plants near a ditch, water is absolutely a must to bring up blooms. By preparing the planting holes with rich soil amendments correctly, less water will be necessary.
BARE-ROOT DAYLILY FANS
After your planting area is dug and amended, pack a firm cone mount in center and spread plant roots over the mound making certain the crown sits only at the ground level. Cover only the roots with soil, (plants pull themselves down quickly) pack to remove air pockets. Mulch well with oak leaves, pine straw, or I use fine grind pine bark and keep moist until new growth appears. Fertilize before Valentine’s Day and again by Halloween. Use 100% organic 6-6-6 with trace elements and water regularly!!! A soil test is advised.
AFTER THREE TO FOUR YEARS
When clumps pull down too deeply, dig and divide the daylily fans and replant to achieve maximum bloom and healthy vigorous plants. Do allow two to three feet between each for maximum bloom if not planning on lifting yearly. Large mature display clumps of daylilies benefit from an extra early spring tonic feeding of liquid fertilizer, such as Miracle Gro, applied with a hose and applicator shortly before scapes begin to form. This should be done only after last frost date has passed. Healthy well grown clumps are not usually bothered by aphids, however, should this problem appear, a vigorous hard stream of water applied with a hose end fan spray cleans up the infestation. One drop of water on these thin skinned rascals is equal to the force of an atomic bomb. We never use insect poison chemicals here. Many toads and frogs take care of any slug hatches. We use water from automatic sprinklers every evening if no rain occurs, keeping at bay all spider mites.
If planting daylilies from pots, first remove the upper soil down to where roots come out of crown is above the ground. Plant soil ball as you would a small tree or shrub, alternating soil with water to remove all air pockets – this is a must! Do not break up the lower roots unless you cut off the upper leavers. Place pots as you would bare fans (in the same time of prepared soil). Feed and water later in the same manner. Recently planted potted daylilies need extra good soakings to get them off and growing well.
Welcome to the wonderful world of daylilies.
Please, don’t hesitate to call should you have any growing problems concerning daylilies.