Friday, July 01, 2011

Daylily Confusion

Friday, July 1, 2011

A drippy, wet morning here on the mountain, 55°, windless, quiet. A walk with Karl the Wonder Dog stretched halfway to Peacham Pond and back but it was eventless with no wildlife to see or hear. Perhaps the birds and animals are still waking up like me.

Daylily bloom has started at the nursery but again I am confused by when certain flowers are supposed to bloom. Last summer set a new record for the warmest summer since weather and temperature records were first recorded in the 1880's. The daylilies really confused everyone because they bloomed out early because of the heat. Gail kept everything in the pots well watered and fertilized and there were always nice daylilies to see and buy but the fields that normally had color through August were mostly green and visitors expecting color asked one after another, "What happened?"

Spring and early summer 2011 is a different story. The growing fields have been wet since the snows melted and as such the weeds are terrible and the grasses stretch above the daylily scapes in places. There's little we can do as equipment sinks in the mud and we have been very involved with picking up after the floods of late May. Just the same, the daylilies are beginning to bloom now even though I ask Gail every day to remind me what is happening with them. They will be spectacular and alluring but I'm not sure when. The constant rain has kept the average temperatures down a bit and this has contributed to the confused bloom.

I have mentioned before that the old standbay, Lemon Lollipop, which blooms in profusion now and will continue to do so through September. It looks great. Bella Lugosi is standing in water and blooming away and Beth Barth has started for why I don't know. Up top here is a picture of Selma Rose, a nice pink, and that has been joined by a couple other pinks including a new one that Gail only describes as "I think I paid too much for it." I don't remember names that begin with that type description as I have always tried to offer plants that are hardy, dependable and not expensive. I better learn this new one.

Jersey Spider is not a spider daylily at all but when it first blooms, some might think so. It grows to 3 feet tall over time and it will be blooming when the season ends. When established, the flowers are large. When you hear conversations about daylilies you often hear a lot of "I have all the yellows and oranges already". That's probably never true and collections around here often overlook the strength of Jersey Spider as it exhibits a luminescence that sparkles in the evening garden.

Yesterday Gail had blooms of about 15 daylilies picked and displayed in Mason jars on the table. She was interrupted in her picking and never finished but there were probably a couple dozen daylilies in bloom. Today as the temperature warms, we'll try to get everything picked and get in the habit of displaying for everyone. Here's a picture from last year showing how we do it. It takes time to prepare each morning but it gives visitors a good idea of "what blooms when" around here without having to walk the fields. It also makes it easy for customers to ask questions about bloom time, bud size and count, and height. Everyone likes the idea and we do too!

Writing from the mountain above Peacham Pond where I am wearing a big smile this morning. Five hours ago my third grandson was born. Another Seattle boy, joining his two brothers. I am awaiting the details but all is well and others beside me are smiling too. Wish I could hold him.

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1 comment:

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I like the way you display the daylilies. I have seen this done various ways at daylily farms. It is nice to see them aligned like this. In this way when you go to purchase something you can look at the blooms to see which one you forget to write down. Congrats on the new grandson.