Hemerocallis (hay-me-ro-ka-lis) AKA Day lilies are so named because the individual flowers only last a day. Don't for one minute think this means a poor floral display as there are so many buds borne on the many stems that that you will hardly notice that just one of the flowers has finished its display. Day lilies are almost fool proof plants in that they are remarkably easy to grow. They are very tolerant of soil type and have a survival instinct that will surprise even the most neglectful gardener. Happiest in full sun but tolerant of light shade; preferably in soil that does not get bone dry.
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At Wairere we stock predominantly evergreen Day Lilies. Your new plant will quickly form a clump of broad grassy like foliage. You will have to watch for slugs and snails making a home in the centre of the clump, so use your preferred method of dispatch every now and then. In spring flower stems will start to appear and should continue through to mid summer. Some sporadic flowering can occur through to autumn. The colour range is fantastic from pure white, brightest yellow, lemon yellow, deep wine red, peach, pink, crimson, salmon, etc, etc. Flowers can be large or small, single, double, wavy or frilly. Day Lilies are not renowned for their fragrance but many do have a soft pleasant perfume. Clumps can be tidied easily with the tugging off of scruffy looking foliage or just simply cut back the whole plant (you can be quite ruthless) and watch fresh new leaves appear almost immediately.
Use to quickly fill a blank space in the garden, cover banks or suppress weeds. Intersperse in the perennial border or you can even use as a container plant. If you lived in China or Japan you would probably throw some in the wok when doing a stir fry as Day Lilies are cultivated as a food crop in these countries. All parts of the plant are edible and the buds are particularly delicious. I like sprinkling the flowers in a summer salad.
Whether you are an experienced gardener or a novice, Day Lilies are certainly worth adding to your wish list for ease of care and long flowering period.