Saturday, July 6, 2013

Crazy for daylilies

The daylilies in the new garden are finally blooming, after more than a year's wait, and I have a favorite ...

When I was a girl, my mother had daylilies. Two kinds. The common orange and another one that was darker, more maroon. I loved those daylilies, in part, because they always made me sad. When they bloomed, I knew the summer was about half over, and it was time to count down the days until school started and my summer freedom was over.

I was surprised to learn, some time ago, that there are thousands of varieties of daylilies. At the time I had no garden (nor for about a decade afterwards or more). But the first thing I ordered after we'd been here at Pugsley for a year was a set of 15 daylilies. I spent hours on the Valley of the Daylilies site, picking a selection of historical and spider varieties that I hoped would look good together. I love the look of spiders, but I also want a garden that looks like it could have been here for 100 years (with a bit of imagination, that is).

It was a little odyssey to get them into the right spot in the yard and get them blooming. They didn't do well at all last year and I had to dig a second, sunnier bed for them this spring, but now they're blooming and here they are -- the ones that have bloomed so far, that is.

I've had real trouble getting a good shot of the garden, but here are the best couple, from the corner ...

And from the other end nearer the house ...

When I walk out there, though, it is, in part, the uniqueness of each one that is so captivating, and I wanted to share that with you. So, starting at the end nearest the house, with an apricot bloomer named Tiffy, here goes.

#12 Tiffy

This is historic, developed by Wild in 1968. It's short, with 22" scapes, thus at the front of the garden. It is a midseason bloomer, described as diamond dusted apricot with a flush of red on petals and green throat. I don't see the green throat -- just saying.

#14 American Revolution

Also developed by Wild, in 1972. This is a midseason rebloomer, 28" high. Described as velvety black red with green throat.


#15 Heavenly Curls

My favorite. This is not historic! Developed by Gossard in 2000, it is a midseason 27" high bloomer. It is listed as an unusual form, a cross of (Mormon Spider × Frozen Mert). Described as near white self above yellow green throat.

#7 Aabachee

This is historic, developed by R. Cheetham in 1957. It is a spider, ratio 7.50:1. It is a 32" midseason to late bloomer, described as antique ruby self.

This only just bloomed for the first time this morning and it dropped a petal -- but for the sake of illustration, until there are more ...

and here are the later blooms ...

#11 Catherine Woodbery

This is not blooming yet. It is historic, developed by F. Childs in 1967. It is a 30" mid- to late season bloomer with an extended bloom, said to be very fragrant. It is described as an orchid self with green throat and the photos online are very beautiful. I can't wait to see this one. 

... and, here it is, July 12 ... and it is very fragrant, in a day lily kind of way.

#10 Black Arrowhead

I love this spider developed by N. Roberts in 2002. It is a 32" midseason three-way branching bloomer with a 4.11:1 ratio. It is also semi-evergreen. It is described as light mauve purple with dark purple eye above green throat, but some of mine are actually pretty dark.

#9 Limited Edition

This is another historic beauty, developed by Lambert in 1969 as a cross between (sdlg × Mont Blanc). It's a 35" early bloomer and is described as a spider 4:40:1 ratio, but only three of the petals are spidery and the blooms themselves don't feel like some of the more extreme spiders. The color is very light and clear, described as chrome lemon with green throat.

#5 Old-fashioned Maiden

This was developed by G. Couturier in 1993. It is a 35" midseason extended bloom spider with a ratio of 5.11:1. It is described as a light red orange spider with wine v shaped eyezone above gold green throat. 

#3 Cat's Cradle

This is unfortunately not going to bloom this year -- no scapes. I might have replanted it too low. It was developed by Hager in 1985 as a cross of (Carolicolossal × Kindly Light). It is an evergreen 38" early to midseason reblooming spider with a 5.80:1 ratio, described as a yellow spider self.

#1 Stupidville U.S.A.

This was developed very recently by Bachman in 2007 as a cross of ((Shoo-fly Pie × Suzy Cream Cheese) × (Mule Ears × Serge Rigaud)). It is a semi-evergreen four-way branching 44" mid- to late season bloomer, described as cranberry red with chartreuse midribs above yellow green throat.

#13 Coleman Hawkins

This just bloomed for the first time this morning. It's a beautiful, beautiful color. Even the photos don't quite do it justice. It was also developed recently by Bachman in 2001 as a cross of (Highland Pinched Fingers × Highland Spider). It is a four-way branching 28" midseason bloomer, described as bright orange self above yellow gold throat.

#6 Purple Waters

This is more old fashioned, developed in 1942 by Russell. It is a 36" early- to mid-season rebloomer, semi-evergreen. Described as dark red with a halo. I have a hard time telling it apart from Stupidville, especially in the photos, but it is more muted, more purple.

#4 Red Thrill

This is not my favorite, but it's pretty up against the cleomes. It was developed by G. Lenington in 1964 as a cross of (Wanda × sdlg), and it is historic. It is a 40" midseason spider with a 4.20:1 ratio (so not very spidery). It is described as cherry red self with green throat, and it really is that red.

#8 Dacquiri

This is also not blooming yet, a historic variety developed by D.F. Hall in 1963, the year I was born. This is a 32" midseason rebloomer described as pale yellow blend with green throat.

Here it is! Personally, I think it is closer to the orchid color of Catherine Woodbery, than pale yellow.

#2 Anatomically Correct

This is an amazing gem, developed in 2001 by J.P. Murphy as a cross of (Cat's Cradle and sdlg). It is a 42" early- to mid-season reblooming spider with a ratio of 5.20:1. It is semi-evergreen and fragrant -- tho I can't say I've smelled it. It is described as clear yellow with faint red watermark above tiny chartreuse throat.

And last, but not least ... the perennial, early morning 
#1 Two Cats with Husband

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