Bring sunshine yellow to your garden this summer.
No matter if you’re a wet-behind-the-ears beginner or a grizzled veteran like Grumpy, daylilies are among the easiest perennials to grow—no matter where in the South you live. All they need are full to part sun and well-drained soil and you’re set. Most, though, bloom for about a three-week period in summer and they’re done. That’s why Grumpy enjoys growing reblooming daylilies like this one.
It’s called ‘Happy Returns,’ a very apt description, because it doesn’t bloom just once. It blooms off-and-on from May through September in my garden, and that makes me very happy. Bright yellow blooms, 3-1/2 inches wide stand on 18-inch stalks above compact tufts of foliage. I photographed these last Saturday. Beautimous!
Another excellent feature of this plant is how quickly it multiplies. All you see here I grew from a single plant set out about seven years ago. That first plant grew into a nice-sized clump in two years. I then divided the clump into eight smaller ones in early spring. Now those clumps are as plump as the first and I enjoy hundreds of blossoms in a front yard border.
Maybe yellow isn’t your color, though. That’s OK. Reblooming daylilies come in lots of different colors and sizes. Among them – ‘Apricot Sparkles’ (soft-apricot blooms, 4-inch flower, 18 inches tall), ‘Dublin Elaine’ (double light pink, 5-1/2 inches, 32 inches tall), ‘Earlybird Cardinal’ (watermelon-red, 4 inches, 21 inches tall), ‘Frankly Scarlet’ (scarlet, 4-inches, 24 inches tall), ‘Janice Brown’ (light pink with rose eye, 4-inches, 21 inches tall), ‘Pardon Me,’ (burgundy-red, 3 inches, 14 inches tall), and ‘Plum Perfect’ (plum-purple, 3-1/2 inches, 24 inches tall).
“That’s great,” you say, “you’ve excited me beyond all human understanding, but where can I buy reblooming daylilies?” Lot of places, including better garden centers and local daylily farms (it’s surprising how many there are). If you strike out there, Oakes Daylilies is a great online source.
WATCH: Here's Everything You Should Know About Daylilies
Daylilies have few pests other than deer, but one I’ve noticed in my garden is a small, orange-red and black insect called a milkweed bug. It’s an easy bug to spot because of its color and because it moves quickly to hide when it sees you coming to squash it. It damages daylilies by sucking the sap from unopened flower buds. The targeted buds turn yellow, shrivel, and drop before opening. I lost an entire flush of blooms on ‘Happy Returns’ before I realized what was happening.
To control milkweed bugs, spray unopened flower buds according to label directions with Triazicide, spinosad, or neem oil. Don’t spray open flowers, as these products are toxic to bees.