Day Lily Season

One of the great joys of summer for me is daylily season.    Hemerocallis is one of my very favorite summer flowers.   It is hardy, easy to grow, makes a good display and has few enemies.  It transplants well, divides well, and is generally hard to kill, although the voles have been trying.  When I arrived here, there was only one kind, the old-fashioned one, growing here.   Now I have collected about three dozen varieties and every year I try to add a few more.   Some I get from friends, some I buy in stores or from specialty catalogs and I have purchased several at Grace Gardens (, a daylily garden near Geneva that I love to visit.   In recent years, I have tried to be better at recording the names, but with the way CNY winters beat up my name plates, I unfortunately have lost names regularly.  Several of my lilies I inherited from my Grandmother Isaman, including one called Frans Hall that is still sold in catalogs today.

The name, daylily, comes from the fact that each bloom lasts only one day.   (However, I have collected one strange but very fragrant variety that blooms each evening and closes in the morning).   Many people are not aware that some strains are fragrant.   In a way, it is sad each evening as beautiful displays come to an end with the setting sun.  Yet in another sense, I always think about how every morning I have a brand new garden display!   It is one small way God’s mercies are new every morning (Lam. 3: 22,23 ESV).   The old blossoms of the night before were faded in the sun or beaten up by rain, but the new ones of the morning are perfect.  So each morning all summer during day lily season, I go out to see what has opened for today.    I have observed unusual things on those morning walks too.  One morning, I found a green tree frog backed down into a large daylily blossom.   If I extend the spiritual analogy, as a Christian, I can look forward each morning to how God’s grace will make this day a fresh experience walking with my Savior.

I’m including a few pictures from this year’s gardens.    You may notice that I tend toward the jungle look in gardens as opposed to the neatly-separated-plants look.  I like the happy coincidences that happen as plants overlap.  I’d rather they fill in the spaces, and then I don’t have to.   If it’s weeds – well, I will eventually get to them…

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