The Happy Daylily Blog - daylily pictures and thoughts from my garden

December 13th, 2017

The blocks to border my backyard beds were delivered yesterday. The old wooden bed timbers have been removed and I'm ready to have my yard guy lay the blocks. Hopefully he can do it before Christmas. With a little help he can probably do it in a single day while it would take me many days to accomplish the same thing. I decided to go with blocks because wooden timbers just don't last like they used to. I think the first timbers I used lasted 20 years but now I'm lucky to get 4 years before they start falling apart. The blocks shouldn't have to ever be replaced which is good.


Seedling 15-024

Seedling 15-024 comes from the cross (Hedwig's Eyes X Dragon Knife). The bloom only measures a little over 5" but the bright yellow color and bold purple eye really make it stand out in the garden.


December 8th, 2017

No gardening today... (yes, this is Houston this morning).


December 7th, 2017

I have never been one to pay a lot of attention to what was currently popular in daylily breeding. I guess that's one of the advantages of being a hobby hybridizer. I can concentrate on whatever makes me happy instead of trying to create something that others will want to purchase. Still, it's been interesting to observe how trends have changed in daylilies over the years.

My earliest recollections were about how hybridizers were trying to improve daylily ruffles especially in purple and red tetraploids. There wasn't a lot of tet ruffling years ago especially in those colors. Then wide petaled daylilies became the rage followed by daylilies with colored edges. More recently however, daylily trends have gone full circle with narrow petals like spiders and unusual forms becoming popular. These are like those that were common 30 years ago when I started growing daylilies.


Seedling 13-056

While I like just about any style daylily, wide petalled large flowered daylilies with edges are my favorites and most of my seedlings under evaluation fit into these categories. Today's seedling (13-056) is both wide petaled and has an edge. 13-056 also has a very green throat and there's some green in the yellow ruffled edges. So far bud count has only been in the mid teens but I'm hoping for better results once I get it out of the pot and into the ground.


November 27th, 2017

Some daylilies multiply slowly. I've even had a couple that have taken as much as three years to go from 1 fan to 2 fans. Other daylilies multiply like crazy. I always like daylilies that multiply well but the down side can be having to divide them more frequently. When a clump gets too thick, the blooms can become smaller and fewer. So I try and keep a step ahead by dividing when the clump starts to get large.


Caribbean Magic (Jarvis, 2014)

Caribbean Magic is one of those great increasers. Last fall I planted 4 fans in a new bed in the front yard. As usual, it increased like crazy. Today I dug the clump and divided it. The original 4 fans were now 24 fans - a 6-fold increase in just one year.


November 25th, 2017

I got a real workout with the garden task I just finished. In preparation for reworking all the backyard beds, I had to move about a hundred 7-gal pots to a temporary location across the yard. Being cool this time of year, the soil in the pots had retained much of the moisture from the last watering and were incredibly heavy. I estimate they averaged about 50 lbs each. Multiplying the 100 pots times 50 lbs each would mean I moved about two and a half tons of pots. There was a day when this would have taken maybe a couple of hours but it took these old bones way longer than that. But I did finish it in one day.

I also moved a couple of dozen pots of Aspidistra from their ultra-shady location behind a shed in preparation for their planting in the front yard. I'm going to put them in the far side of one of the daylily beds. That side of the bed is under the canopy of the neighbor's huge oak tree. Aspidistra grows very well outside here if you give it lots of shade.


Seedling 16-141

Seedling 16-141, new this past year, didn't have an impressive bud count but I like the clear, bright red color.


November 12th, 2017

One of my fall projects is to purchase some of those border wall stones and make some bed borders in my front yard. Friday I went to my local Home Depot to see what they had to offer. The stones which would work were selling for over $4 each but I found one that was marked down to about a dollar. I bought a dozen which is what I needed for the first bed. That evening I suddenly realized that I should have purchased the other 40 stones to complete the project before they were gone as I would save over $120 dollars. So yesterday I went back to buy the rest. 40 stones weighs over 800 lbs. and a couple of employees even helped me get the stones to the cash register. When they entered the SKU for the stones it came up with a price of .01 each. The cashier said she couldn't sell the stones for a penny.

Then one of the employees who was helping me took me to see the manager. When he heard the story he said "Sir, today is your lucky day". Yes, he actually said that. And then he told me he couldn't sell them for a penny but because I was a good customer I could have the stones for free. The employees even helped me load them in my pickup. What a deal!

When I got home I did a little research and found an explanation for what happened. According to one website, once Home Depot decides to close out an item it goes through a markdown process to hopefully sell their remaining stock. The first markdown is 25% off followed by 50% and then 75% until the item is sold out. This is all done automatically by date with the additional markdowns usually happening at 3-month intervals. If the item still hasn't sold at 75% off, it's automatically marked down to a penny. Penny items are supposed to be removed from the shelves and destroyed. Of course, this removal process takes time so it's possible for someone to try and purchase a penny item before the store has a chance to remove it. This is what happened to me.

I don't believe cashiers are not supposed to sell you penny items. They're supposed to confiscate them if these items make it to the register but I wonder just how often this really happens. After all, they're just going to throw the items away and it would create good will for the company. Furthermore, what happens when you go through the self check out and there isn't a cashier to see the penny item (especially on weekends when the store is packed and the lines are long)?

One website I found even provided details on how to exploit this policy. Just google "Home Depot penny price". Nuff said...


Seedling 14-034

Seedling 14-034 has 5" blooms on 26" scapes and has a bud count in the mid 20's on 5-way branching. It comes from the cross (Edwardian Charm X Happy Halloween).


November 4th, 2017

This morning I sprayed again for rust. The last spraying knocked down most of the active rust but after a 1" rain a few days ago followed by days of high humidity it was starting to appear again. It was a nice mild morning so it was pleasant to be outside.

The effects of my cutting back over the past few years became very apparent this morning. Three years ago it would take 21 gallons to spray all the daylilies. As I went thru the cut-backs, smaller amounts of spray were required. This morning it took only 7 gallons to give them a good thorough spraying.


Seedling 16-147

Seedling 16-147 has 7" blooms on 27" scapes. It comes from the cross (May I Have This Dance X Sarah Starchak).


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