Tips On How To Use Dwarf Daylilies In The Garden

For years, we have struggled to produce bigger and better things, but we have finally come to our senses and have begun to demand the small and the compact. It was inevitable that the world of horticulture should be affected by this trend.

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Miniature roses, gladiolus, orchids, cannas, iris, and daffodils have made their successful debuts. So, it is only natural that daylilies be added to the list.

Here are just a few ways you can use dwarf daylilies in your garden: Try them as a border along paths and walks or as an edging for flower beds. (You can run the lawnmower under the edge of their foliage, saving time and money you might otherwise spend on hand-edging.)

Three or four clumps can be tucked under the base of nonflowering shrubs or evergreens to furnish color. You can use others to cover sandy locations where scanty moisture is a problem and in ditches where water stands constantly. I use them on a small hill to help prevent erosion. And, the smaller ones stand up better under wind and rain.

Dwarf Daylilies Varieties

Now for the varieties. My favorite is Butter Print. This dainty plant grows only 12 to 15 inches tall, but it has rich, butter-yellow petals which overlap and are pinched back at the ends. The bloom is generally about 2” inches across. I am also partial to Babette, a dark orange-yellow with much the same growth habits.

This past season I had the most bloom on Bermuda Lass, a magnificent circus red dwarf which grows 18″ inches tall and has 3″ inch blooms. I recommend it, especially for foreground plantings.

Theron is a deep mahogany red with a golden throat—a genuinely regal sight in a shady location. Its petals and sepals look like rich velvet against the deep green foliage. Chippendale, Russell’s Minuet, Baby Farr, and Little Mermaid offer contrasting brown, yellow, and red tones.

Some gardening friends are very enthusiastic about Thumbelina, a lovely little orange miniature. Last summer, this plant had forty-five blooms on one stem in one garden. They also favor Golden Dewdrop, with its 4″ inch yellow flowers on 18″ inch stems.

Since it is entirely sunproof, it is especially desirable here in Florida. Many daylily fans also like Petite Bijou, and ivory flushed with pink which grows 15″ inches tall; Demi-Tasse, a bottle of wine and cream bicolor 16″ inches high; and Ming Toy, a vivid red of 15″ inches.

Recent introductions include many others worthy of mention. Among them is Widget, which drew much favorable comment at the regional meeting of the American Hemerocallis Society in Ocala, Florida, last year. This delightful dwarf has a 2″ inch bloom with creamy buff petals and cream sepals with a yellow throat that is encircled by a cocoa-brown halo.

Another newcomer is Cherub Pink, a miniature of delicate salmon pink. Arrangers and corsage-makers like it because its blooms stay open in the evening. Dainty Darling, a bicolor bearing 3″ inch flowers of cream and rosy red with an apple green throat, can be added to this list. Bright Boy is another low-growing dwarf (20″ inches) with eye-catching brilliant red flowers with a waxy sheen.

Recent years have brought tremendous fame to the versatile daylily. I predict equal popularity for the dwarfs and miniatures. I think that they are dainty and appealing is sufficient justification to plant them. The hybridizers strive to produce even smaller models and lower-growing dwarfs for real connoisseurs. They will also eventually give us doubles and curly-petalled spiders.

As gardeners become more conscious of the miniature daylilies, they will take these charming beauties to their hearts, and the plants will find their rightful place on dealers’ lists everywhere. Why not find a place for them in your garden now?

41330 by Marion Payne