Beautiful for a Day

Daylily.

Hemerocallis.

“Beautiful for a day”.

That’s what the word “hemerocallis” means, in the greek roots from which it stems.

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Here is the classic old-fashioned daylily.

I first encountered this flower when I was three and four years old. There was a wild patch of them just before the stoplights on the way to Woods Hole. Their massed, glorious orange thrilled me then, and still does today, over sixty years later.

Now that I’m a junior oldster, I have daylilies in my own gardens.

Let me share them with you.

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A spidery orange, from the garden of an old Cape Cod house.

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This came from a catalog’s offer of 20 way cool varieties for little money. OK, they didn’t say way cool, but that’s what they meant.

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Another kind from the way cool assortment. Peachy.

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Another one from the old Cape Cod house. It’s so fragrant that I suspect it’s the old “Hyperion” variety.

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A spidery reddish kind. Not my favorite, but it’s nice from a distance.

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Another yellow. I read that there are over 60,000 named varieties of hemerocallis.

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There are so many daylily varieties. This is as solid and compact a yellow as you’d ever desire.

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Can’t remember the name, but “peach ruffles” would be just fine.

 

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Another one from Waycoolsville.

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A nice dark red. Was one of my favorites, once.

A few years ago, when a house next door was being torn down, we got permission to dig up anything we wanted in the gardens there. I’d admired some particularly nice red daylilies in one bed, but they’d been covered by rocks and fill. After some hard work, I was able to uncover a few remnant shoots, which I salvaged.

I have been propagating them ever since.

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The standard daylily will open on the first day of summer. There are now earlier varieties, and later ones. This red is a “later” one, opening its buds in the second or third week of July. Our first blossom was yesterday.

They’re so red, and so worth having.

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3 responses to “Beautiful for a Day

  1. They are equal opportunity eaters, so they’ve been eating lots of other things instead of all-daylily all the time. We do have a lot of hemerocallis on the place, so there’s probably more than they can eat.

  2. I always berate myself for taking photos of day lilies — so common! And I can’t stop taking them — so beautiful!

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