Consider the lilies of the field...even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. (Mat 6:28-29)

I don't know if Daylilies were actually the lilies of the field referred to in this verse from the bible, but the description surely fits. Hemerocallis comes from two Greek words: 1. èmera: day (like in ephemerides) and 2. kalos: beautiful (like in kaleidoscope). Literally translated: beauty of a day, and are so named because each bloom lasts for only a single day. Daylilies are grown in every state in the United States and are also gaining in popularity in many countries around the world. There are daylily clubs and organizations all over the United States as well as many parts of the world.

Probably one of the easiest perennial flowers to grow, the daylily will tolerate most soil conditions, has few pests, is disease resistant, and can survive for fairly long periods without watering. But like most flowers, they will do much better when properly cared for, rewarding you with many blooms over a long bloom season. Information about how to care for your daylilies can be found on my daylily culture page.

I have been growing daylilies since 1985. I started out with a small landscaping mix from Park Seed in one bed. Within 2 years, I was hooked. Then began the process of replacing everything on my city lot with daylilies. When this was done, I began building more beds so I could grow even more daylilies. Today about the only way I could add more daylilies is if I give up the remaining front lawn. Because I now grow thousands of seedlings, I only have room for less than 200 registered cultivars.

Hybridizing is by far my favorite part of growing daylilies. During the bloom season, every morning I walk the yard, coffee mug in hand, viewing the newly opened blooms, but the real excitement comes in the seedling patch where I find blooms that are really new - no one has ever seen them open before! Hybridizing is easy enough that anyone can do it. The hardest part is finding the patience to wait the two years it takes for them to bloom for the first time.

Daylilies multiply and should be periodically dug up and divided. At first I gave the extras away to friends but soon all my friends had enough and I had to find another way to 'recycle' the surplus. I potted up about a hundred in 1-gal pots and one Saturday, I put daylily yard sale signs up at the ends of my street. I sold them all. This has now turned into an annual event, the proceeds going to buy more daylilies.

Because of the surge in the daylily's popularity, there are now literally hundreds of daylily related websites. Many offer dozens or even hundreds of pictures of daylilies that they offer for sale. Some of these sites even include useful information on caring for daylilies. Many local daylily clubs also have their own websites as well as dozens of people who simply grow daylilies and like to share pictures from their gardens.

Most large metropolitan areas have daylily clubs or societies. They are a lot of fun and a great way to meet people who enjoy daylilies. They usually have regular meetings and can be a good local source for obtaining daylilies. Daylily folks are a friendly lot and are always happy to see newcomers attending their events. The Houston area has four local clubs, the Houston Daylily Society, the Cypress Creek Daylily Club, the Lone Star Daylily Society, and the one I belong to, the Houston Hemerocallis Society.

The only caution I can give regarding the hobby of growing daylilies is that it's very addictive. There are thousands of others like me who spend countless hours growing and enjoying daylilies. Sure, we get dirt under our fingernails and we are tired at the end of the day, but the beauty we see in the early morning sunlight makes it all worth it.