July is the month for …..Day lilies.

More and more day lilies or Hemerocallis, open their flowers during the month of July. They bring such colour to the borders while the roses are having a rest before flowering again. They are so easy to grow and don’t seem to mind my heavy soil which is good. When I find something that likes it, I try to find any cousins of theirs that might also enjoy the same conditions, hence I seem to have gathered quite a few over the years, but can’t remember many of their names unfortunately.

Day lily

This is a small one that is on the rockery by the alpine scree.


Day lily


Catherine Woodbury

Catherine Woodbury, I suppose I remember her name because there is a village named Woodbury near to us.

Canadian border patrol

Canadian Border Patrol has been bought to remind me of my nephew and his family in Canada.

Day lily

Day lily

Gentle Shepherd

I think this is Gentle Shepherd, one of the whitest I have.


DaY lily

Day lily

Day lily

H. Stafford

H. Stafford. My parents used to live in Stafford, so this one is easy to remember.


The clumps soon increase so even though each flower only lasts a day, overall, day lilies produce colour in the garden for a good month.

Hemerocallis Gall midge damage

The only bad point about them is that they can be devastated by the Day Lily gall midge which is a small fly which lays its eggs inside a bud. In the photo above you can see the normal buds, but the one at the back shows how distorted it has become. Maggots develop and cause the bud to be inflated and unable to open properly. When the midge is old enough they drop to the ground and overwinter there. In spring they emerge as a fly and fly to daylilies to lay their eggs. By removing affected buds as soon it is obvious they have been attacked, the life cycle can be broken, but they need to be destroyed, never put them on the compost heap. It is suggested that they should be burnt or put in the freezer for a couple of days – I certainly don’t fancy doing the latter – no thank you!

Day lily

A nice one to finish on, couldn’t finish with the photo of the deformed day lily!  This one is up by the pond, but I can’t remember its name I’m afraid.

There are so many different day lilies, different colours, different shapes to the petals, spiders with very slim petals, doubles, singles, two tone or just one colour, frilly or plain – the choice is yours. I do deadhead them each day as I feel the clumps look so much nicer without the dead blooms hanging on, but there again, the choice is yours. There is no need for the colour to go out of the garden when the roses are past their best, day lilies can take up the baton along with Agapanthus and Crocosmia, keeping the colour going until the late summer flowers start their final fling.

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34 Responses to July is the month for …..Day lilies.

  1. Cathy says:

    That’s a nice mix of colours Pauline. I only have orange ones, although one is more yellowy orange. They are almost over here now. Fortunately I haven’t seen or heard of that pest here, but I did see the first solitary lily beetle on my oriental lilies today…. I shall be checking them every couple of hours now!

    • Pauline says:

      Thanks Cathy, but there are so many more colours coming on the market all the time. We too have the wretched red lily beetle, they start with my fritillaries in March, then move onto the lilies, there’s always something to spoil the beautiful flowers!

  2. Alain says:

    You have quite a collection Pauline, including many white ones. They must be quite striking in large clumps.
    I have mostly small flower varieties as they die gracefully and it is not so critical to deadhead them. However, looking at yours I realize I am probably missing something.

    • Pauline says:

      They do give lots of colour to the garden Alain. I just have 2 small ones, all the others are quite large growing to about 3 ft. As you say, the small ones don’t look nearly as bad as the large ones when the flower has gone over.

  3. Cathy says:

    All lovely Pauline and they must be making a stunning contribution to your garden at the moment – I did buy three new ones from Barnsdale last year, but it was later in the season and they weren’t in flower so I was just going on the description – one is looking peachy which is definitely not what I expected as they were meant to pinks/purples… 🙁

    • Pauline says:

      Yes Cathy, they are making quite a show in the garden at the moment, they certainly make the July garden a colourful place. I’m sorry to hear that your day lilies aren’t the colour you were expecting, that is so frustrating! I hope the others turn out to be what you wanted.

  4. Angie says:

    You’ve a lovely collection Pauline. I presently don’t have many but my upcoming plans for my front garden involve Roses and daylilies and am really looking forward to adding to my small collection.
    I found that one of my new daylilies had been suffering and a bit of research I soon found out it was the Daylily Gall Midge. I cut out the one and only flowering stem it had. I hope I caught it in time.

    • Pauline says:

      Sorry Angie,to hear that the dreaded midge has found you! I think it was only necessary to pick off the deformed bud, others would have been fine, hopefully you will be ok for next year. I didn’t have any gall midges until I bought quite a few from a nursery in East Anglia, since then I have been plagued with them. Each year I bag up the deformed buds but I must miss one or two because even though they are decreasing, I still have some unfortunately.

  5. Peter/Outlaw says:

    Your daylilies are beautiful and you have such a wide range of colors! I have only a few but each year when they bloom I promise to get more!

    • Pauline says:

      Thanks Peter, I think a lot of daylily breeding is going on over your side of the Atlantic, I’ve seen some photos of amazing flowers and wish I could get them over here!

  6. Jane Scorer says:

    What a huge variety of colour and shape ! I am impressed by your recall of varieties , I am ashamed to say I don’t know one of mine ! I know them as ‘the yellow one’ or ‘the stripy one’!! They are so exotic, it’s hard to believe that they are hardy.

    • Pauline says:

      Unfortunately Jane, I can’t remember most of them, like you, I refer to the rest by their colour! There are some really beautiful ones out there and new varieties come on to the market all the time, but I don’t think I have room for any more!

  7. Paul says:

    Such gorgeous flowers. You have some wonderful varieties. We introduced some of the dark rust kind here (Name unknown) from Beth Chatto’s garden last year. Apparently the buds are edible and mildly peppery but I’m yet to try. Paul

    • Pauline says:

      Good to hear from you Paul, thanks for leaving a message. Yes, I had read that the flowers are edible, but I think I would rather see the flowers in the garden, I’ve never been tempted! Just think, it might be a bud that has the gall mite inside…yuk!

  8. You have certainly amassed an impressive collection. Some really lovely colours, i am torn between the pale and interesting and the darker, richly marked. I am new to daylilies, at least iI seem to remember growing a pale yellow one many years ago but it was shaded out, so I have planted two, and am interviewing them, as one must when getting to know new plants!

    • Pauline says:

      There are so many to choose from these days Janet, new ones coming on the market all the time, it is very difficult to make a choice. I love the way you said that you are “interviewing” your plants, such a good idea, we should all do it more often!

  9. debsgarden says:

    I love the variety you have. I was never a lover of day lilies. The ones I have were already here when I arrived, but over the years I have come to appreciate them. Now I am determined to add day lilies with a mix of colors to the common orange ones I already have. Then I am sure I will love them!

    • Pauline says:

      I’m sure you can get some really super ones Deb, a lot of breeding is taking place in the USA with some amazing colour combinations. They certainly supply plenty of colour here during the month of July, I wouldn’t want to be without them. I’m, sure you will come to love them as soon as you have lots of different colours!

  10. I didn’t know about the gall midge, Pauline and it explains some problems I’ve had with some new spider daylilies. I also have about four large clumps of a traditional variety that was here when I started work. I can deadhead the spiders but not the clumps – simply too many. You have quite a collection. Dave

    • Pauline says:

      It is such a horrible little midge Dave,I have no proof that it came from a nursery in East Anglia when I sent off for quite a few, but it is only since then that I have to remove about half my buds, so frustrating! Keep picking the deformed buds and hopefully you will break the life cycle eventually, some years are worse than others. I still like them though!

  11. Frank says:

    Sorry about your midge problems, but they sure do still put on a great show! I wonder what if anything you could accomplish if you removed every bloom stalk for an entire season. That might break the cycle…. but if it didn’t it might break you with the thoughts of the whole season lost!
    I have successfully avoided adding many daylilies. I could crack at any moment though since they are so fresh and full of color!

    • Pauline says:

      I’d never thought of sacrificing a years blooms Frank, to try and get rid of the Gall Midge, I think I would have to be pretty desperate to do it. If it gets any worse, I will try it as it should work, thanks. They are so colourful, go on, spoil yourself, I’m sure they would look good in your garden!

  12. Anna says:

    Oh you have some beauties there Pauline. I’ve only grown day lilies for the last five years or so and wish that I had discovered them sooner. They make great partners for a number of plants. I’ve been lucky to have been the recipient of several varieties as a gift from a friend. I certainly would not want to put buds affected by gall midge in my freezer either 🙁

    • Pauline says:

      Thank you Anna, I agree they do look good mingling with other plants, lucky you being given a few by your friend ! I know if I did put the deformed buds in the freezer, they would be well wrapped up, but even so, I don’t like the idea of it at all!!

  13. Christina says:

    you have reminded me I should do a post about my Day Lilies soon. They have lasted much longer this year. You have a wonderful collection and such large flowers do give us lots of colour for our money1

    • Pauline says:

      They certainly give lots of colour Christina, I wouldn’t be without them, they keep the colour in the garden till the roses start again.

  14. Such a lovely selection of daylilies Pauline. I have never heard of the Day Lily gall midge, but up until the last few years I hadn’t heard of Japanese Beetles either! At least I will know what I am looking at if I come across a distorted bud.
    P.S. I noticed the Bear’s Breeches, Acanthus mollis in your header and they look stunning in such a large group.

    • Pauline says:

      It’s such a shame Jennifer, that plants have their enemies. Proper lilies with their Red Lily Beetle have put me off buying any more lilies as they do so much damage, or at least their grubs do!
      The Acanthus mollis has gone mad this year, it is at least 3 times the size it was last year and still spreading. I think it was maybe all the rain we had last winter that has done it!

  15. catmint says:

    lovely collection of flowers – I do love them but somehow never found a place for them in the garden. The thought of having a freezer full of maggots isn’t really a very inviting idea – although if you didn’t know what they were, you might think it was some new delicacy – lol!

    • Pauline says:

      I don’t know if day lilies would manage to cope with your heat Catmint, it might be too much for them!
      As for maggots in the freezer, it could be an extra bit of protein if ever we are desperate?!

  16. pbmgarden says:

    Enjoyed seeing your lovely day lilies Pauline. I have only two or three but hesitate to add more because the deer love them. We’d be spoiled if there were no pests to deal with, but wouldn’t gardening be glorious then? I love your header photograph of your magnificent garden. What is the dark blue just to the left of the walk?

    • Pauline says:

      No point in feeding the deer Susie! Yes, gardening would be so easy without all the pests, the birds deal with the aphids, the thrushes with the snails and the hedgehogs with the slugs, but no-one wants to eat deformed buds!
      Thank you for your lovely comment about the garden here, everything in the photo has done so well this year, I think it must have been all the rain last winter. The blue flowers on the left are from a lacecap Hydrangea and to the left of that is a buddlia with flowers the same colour but of course a different shape.

  17. Chloris says:

    I have never been a great fan of day lilies but you have some lovely ones Pauline. I like your pink ones and Gentle Shepherd is such a soft colour.
    I have a large group of what I think is orange Hemerocallis fulva Flore Pleno which I don’ t much like and I would never have planted it. But as I sit in my chair and look down the garden it really lights up the dark area under the trees. Maybe I need to look at these useful plants with fresh eyes.

    • Pauline says:

      Maybe they will grow on you Chloris, I have to admit that I don’t really like the double ones or the ones with so much frilling (?) round the petals, I prefer the simpler shapes with just one colour. I’ve never tried them in shade, but they would certainly brighten up a few shady areas here if I moved some of them, maybe I will move some of them in the autumn to try them out.

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