“Sentimental”, a copyrighted post, was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana

I don’t know if it is a sign that I am getting older or if it is just that I have been gardening for years now, but I am starting to get sentimental over certain plants.  I recently wrote about the soft spot I have for madonna lilies and gardenias, and now another old favorite has started blooming.  The first daylily I ever planted, Plum Tree.

Plum Tree (redu)

I bought this daylily, one fall day, at least ten or more years ago from Wal-mart.  Now, that I look back on it, these plants were pathetic – small, dry roots,  and no healthy leaves.  They were packaged in plastic bags that really did nothing for the health of these plants.  But, since I did not know what daylilies plants were supposed to look like, I just planted them in pots and hoped for the best.  These plants quickly went dormant, but since I didn’t know about dormant daylilies, I thought they had died.  The next spring they did pop back up, but even though they were in pots with excellent soil, drainage, and fertilizer, they grew hardly at all.  For several years, they limped along, growing a little, but never blooming.  I kept them in pots so that they could be in the sun on the patio, but that didn’t seem to help.  I began to read everything I could about daylilies to see if I could get them to grow and bloom.

Finally, one spring, I decided to plant them in the ground in one of the few sunny spots available.  That year, at last, there were some flowers.  After about four years, I finally got to see what Plum Tree daylilies looked like.  After that, these daylilies took off.  They have grown from one puny fan, to many.   The flowers come non-stop for weeks.  In fact, except for the Stella d’Oro, these bloom the longest of all my daylilies.  Even though they get intense sun until about one o’clock in the afternoon, the dark color of the flower doesn’t fade.  This is just a great little daylily.

So, every year now, when the Plum Tree daylilies bloom, I always feel glad.  They have been in my garden for a long time, and they also remind me of an inexperienced gardener who learned a lot about daylilies from growing these Wal-mart ones.



  1. Lee Ann said,

    May 16, 2009 at 5:59 pm

    Daylily plants are possibly the most forgiving of all garden plants, don’t you think? With the possible exception of hyacinths, which I found blooming in the compost pile – not on top of the compost pile, IN IT, under the dirt. Wonders never cease!

    • Jan said,

      May 17, 2009 at 3:34 pm

      Lee Ann, daylilies are quickly becoming one of my favorite plants and a staple in my garden. You can’t beat their blooms and they are easy to care for plants.

  2. Jake said,

    May 16, 2009 at 11:50 pm

    Wow, I love that you have planted and have so many pictures of Daylillies. They seem to be missing here in the Florida landscape a lot, but I have seen more plantred this year and more stores down here carrying them.

    Keep posting these gorgeous blooms!


    • Jan said,

      May 17, 2009 at 3:38 pm

      Jake, I am finding that many plants that were often said to be unsuitable for the Deep South, actually do well here. For years, no one thought hostas, toad lilies, or clematis would thrive, but now, people are planting them and having success. I think the same thing about daylilies. I have many dormant ones that are just gorgeous, but dormants aren’t recommended for this area. That is probably why you are only just starting to see them planted in Florida. Gardeners are pushing the limits and trying something new.

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