July 27, 2009
Mugshots: 4 Pink Daylilies, Part I
The post for all 8 pink daylilies was getting too long, so I’m splitting it into two. The photo above is of New Testament.
First we need to clarify what ‘pink’ means when applied to daylilies. The eight pink daylilies in my yard range from peachy-pink to coral to dusky rose to cranberry. Color in daylilies varies depending on temperature, soil, etc. I think mine tend to have deeper colors thanks to the cooler temperatures here in Spokane – especially at night, when temps usually drop into the 50’s. Below is a picture of the deeply-colored Hush Little Baby.
Second, here’s some daylily background: flower stalks are called scapes. Some daylilies are fragrant – all of the ones in this post have a soft fragrance that reminds me of lilacs, but you have to get close to notice. Daylilies labeled dormant die back to the ground in winter no matter what climate they’re in. Evergreen types will keep their green leaves all winter in mild climates, although they go dormant here in zone 5. I’ve noticed that none of my daylilies appreciate getting wet – by sprinklers or rain. Morning water on the blooms causes the edges to shrivel a bit by afternoon, and the sprinklers are more likely to hit the short daylilies. The blooms hold up much better on dry days. Below is a picture of Jolyene Nichole (I originally wrote that it was a pale version Hush Little Baby, but that was a mistake, sorry).
Third, here are my biases: I prefer shorter varieties that hold their flowers closer to the foliage, as the tall ones often look awkward. I favor flowers that appear to be just one color from afar – I think flowers with sharply contrasting parts look chaotic in the garden, though they can be very nice in a vase. I love ruffles and rounded flowers – so no spider forms here (sorry Dee, Carol, and the rest of the spider fan club!).
But enough preface, here they are:
1. New Testament – 18 in tall scapes, 6 in flowers, early, evergreen, from Oakes Daylilies
The color of these flowers is the closest to true pink among my daylilies: dusky mid-rose-pink, with a hint of peach in the sun. There is a distinct white line running down each of the petals, nice ruffles around the edges and sturdy substance throughout. Sometimes the blooms have a hard time opening all the way, but the great color makes up for it. This daylily began blooming at the beginning of July. Here's another shot of the flower:
2. Jolyene Nichole – 18 in tall scapes, 6 in flowers, midseason, evergreen, from Oakes
The first bloom on this daylily appeared in mid-July. Its color is a bit less saturated than New Testament, and it has a bit more peach mixed in. As you can see, the blooms are ruffled and rounded and very lovely. Below is another picture of this flower.
3. Sue Rothbauer – 20 in tall scapes, 6.5 in flowers, early-midseason, semi-evergreen, from Great Garden Plants
The catalog promised vigorous growth, heavy bloom and plenty of rebloom for this daylily. I’ll have to report on that in a few years, since my plants are just a year old and still getting established. For now I can say that the flowers are a vivid shade of dusky rose-pink with a white line running down the petals. This is the first bloom for this daylily. Actually, it would have bloomed last week (mid-July), but I knocked the bud off while watering (grrrr).
4. Hush Little Baby - 22 in tall scapes, 5 in flowers, late, dormant, from Bloomin Designs
Several catalogs offer this daylily as their best, unfading pink. In hotter climates, it’s probably lighter but still not too pale. In my cooler climate, the blooms are often more of a rich cranberry color, and they certainly are delicious! These flowers are beautiful all day despite their position on the hot west side of my home; the petals are like thick satin with plenty of gathers and refined ruffles. Though it wasn’t the pure pink color I expected, I think this one might be my favorite. It's labelled as late flowering, but it began blooming in mid-July with many of my other daylilies.
I’ll stop here for today. My next mugshots post will include the four peachy-pink and coral-pink daylilies in my yard: Barbara Mitchell, Millie Schlumpf, Dubline Elaine and Seminole Wind.