Saturday, August 20, 2016

On Vacation

Hello Daylily Friends,

Diana and I have just returned from visiting Seattle, Washington and Victoria Canada, and we were led on this exciting adventure by our Georgia Gardening Friend, Walter Reeves. There were 30 Georgia Gardeners on the Trip, and a highlight of the trip was a visit to The Space Needle which is an observation deck that was built in 1962 for the World's Fair. Interestingly, the Space Needle can withstand winds up to 200 miles per hour, and can also withstand an earthquake of up to 9.1 in magnitude. Also interesting is the fact that The Space Needle is protected by 25 lightning rods. Quite a structure.

On our trip we primarily visited gardens, and one beautiful flower I saw that I liked was a red marigold called a "Sinnabar."  It is an old fashioned color with cinnamon red blossoms with a gold edge.  It mixed well with the flowers where we saw it blooming, and I'm going to grow it in our daylily beds.  I particularly like its dark green foilage and the fact that it apparently blooms from midsummer to frost.

Also interesting were the glass art works done by Dale Chihuly who is from Tacoma, Washington.  Although we have seen exhibits of Mr. Chihuly's work here in Atlanta, the exhibits in the buildings next to The Space Needle were fun to examine.  There were so many exhibits but I particularly noticed two.  The first was a massive sized vase that was blue and yellow in color.  Quite nice.  I liked the shape and the colors.  Then there was an odd exhibit for what I've seen from Mr. Chihuly.  He created a glass sculpture of a white snake.   Just eery.  Art is just such an incredible field, especially for an artist like Dale Chihuly. 

I must also point out that there were so many massive trees in Washington and Canada.  There were Furs, Redwoods and Hemlocks, and all were of huge size, but I have never seen a Sequoia.  I was so surprised to personally see this massive tree.  I don't think that Sequoias are natural to Washington, but they do live in California and Oregon.  I also understand that Sequoias can grow to about 300 feet in height, but the root system is only about 6 to 12 feet deep. The roots do spread out to about 50 feet and the tree roots are often tied together to give more stability.  I would add that Diana purchased a Redwood Seedling and she now has it growing here at the house.  One thing I know for sure, if her Redwood survives it will be a giant tree.

We also went to see the incredible "Butchart Gardens."  Wow.  What an incredible place.  I understand that there are 46 full time Gardeners who keep this place at its pristine perfection. We saw valleys, waterfalls, roses, Japanese Gardens, and plenty more.  Seeing a perfect garden just lifts the soul.  We took our picture just as we were entering the gardens, and later I took a picture of Diana Rae.  Choosing pictures is indeed a chore when there was so much to photograph.  Sadly, these gardens were near the end of our vacation, and I doubt that we will ever see them again.

When we arrived back home the grass was overgrown, and the Greenhouse still needed to be cleaned.  So we attacked the yard and finished with the Greenhouse.  I'm showing a picture of the Greenhouse looking new once again.  Soon I will be planting new seeds.

Also have had some wonderful blooms that I haven't yet reported.  One new bloom was Seedling 6-121, and here is the parentage:  (Barbara Watts x Opa Klaus).  It was 26" tall above arching foilage and it had 2-way branching.  I expect more height and more branching since the seedling was only planted on August 20, 2015.  I was particularly impressed with the "teeth" on the seedling.  So, I took another close up view of the teeth.  I had hopes that the teeth from BARBARA WATTS would transfer to OPA KLAUS, but I had no idea that I could have had such tremendous success.

A soon to be introduced daylily is Seedling 3-463, and the parentage is as follows: ((Eternal Treasure x Gnashing of Teeth) x (Eternal Treasure x Gnashing of Teeth)).  It is 30" tall, 4-way branching, 17 buds and a 5" flower.  It has a  yellow and green throat, bounded by a light brown eye, which is again bounded by a lavender self.  There is then a small yellow band on the outside of the petals.  I'm thinking of calling this seedling DOUBLE VISION.

I also have an update on my prior work in trying to convert Billy Dick's double named PEACHLAND RAINBOW.  Back on July 8, 2015, I stated in this blog that I had it converted.  So, I put the plant in a bigger pot, and I had plans to use it this summer.  But it never bloomed.  Then today I was able to check the pollen on a new bloom.  I was so pleased to again see tetraploid pollen.  On my scale the pollen measures between a 13 and a 15 on a hundred point scale.  Hopefully I can freeze some pollen and use it next spring.  And this time I will make sure that the plant receives plenty of cold weather this winter.

Having returned home from vacation, and having made progress in the garden getting everything back on track, Diana and I were most fortunate to travel to the North Alabama Daylily Society in Huntsville, Alabama.  We got up early on Sunday morning, had a nice drive over, and then met The Club's President, Dave Flannigan, and Jim and Sharon Beecher for lunch.  Got to the meeting and set up the program, and failed to take a Club picture as I had planned.  Nevertheless, our friends, Roger and Cherry Harper took several pictures and sent them to us by email, and I'm posting several of these.  It was good to go and visit friends in Huntsville.  As I said to the Club, I am among friends who will let me talk a long time about my most favorite subject: Daylilies!

Also, we are all so blessed that Lily Rae is visiting this week-end.  It is always a joy to be with her.  On her last visit we all went to Georgia Tech on fan day.  Lily Rae and her Mother Kelley Rae had their picture taken with Buzz and several cheerleaders.  Grandpa bought Lily Rae a large Buzz from the Tech book store.  Then this morning Lily Rae and her Mother were sitting together and I had to get a picture.  They are so glad to be together, and I'm just glad to be with them both.

More news soon.


Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Stunning Results; See Pictures!

Hello Daylily Friends,

I was so pleased earlier this summer when my first future introduction bloomed from using TET. SEBASTIAN THE CRAB.  I made posts about the bloom on May 27, and then again on July 5.  My earlier three (3) scapes that I reported on May 27, each had a "W" at the top of the scape, which I equated with three branches.  Then, as I reported on July 5, I had a rebloom scape emerging.  It turned out to have 7-way branching.  I've seen quite a few double daylilies, but I've never seen a 9" bloom on 7-way branching, and most especially on a 37" scape.  In my thinking this is a big leap in hybridizing.  So, this morning, I've got to show the branching, and then show the new blooms.  While I've had some good blooms here in 2016, nothing, absolutely nothing, tops this accomplishment from using TET. SEBASTIAN THE CRAB.  Take a look at the two pictures, and see if you can agree.

I have also just seen my first bloom from having used TET. ASHEE DASHEE.  I crossed this conversion with my seedling 3-349 (Red Sapphire x Red Top Mountain).  While this seedling is very encouraging, I will see much more over the next two years.  I call this new flower Seedling 6-114.

I've also got to show a bloom from Seedling 6-109 which is a cross between BARABARA WATTS and OPA KLAUS.  The teeth from BARABARA WATTS, combined with the teeth from BUZZ SAW BOOGIE, the pod parent of OPA KLAUS, are what I think produced the teeth on 6-109.  I would point out that 6-109 was planted on August 20, 2015. So, 6-109 is less than a year old.  Looking forward to seeing many more blooms from this cross next summer.

I'm also looking forward to seeing what can be produced from my new seedling from TET. SEBASTIAN THE CRAB.


Tuesday, July 5, 2016

2016 AHS National Convention

Hello Daylily Friends,

It took Diana and myself about 7 hours to drive from our house here in Marietta, Georgia to the Hotel in Louisville, Kentucky.  We had to arrive in a timely manner because I was asked to speak to at the "AHS Hybridizer's Forum."  After we arrived I listened to several speakers including Scott Elliott, our Region 5 President, and Hybridizer Rich Howard from Connecticut before it was time for me to speak.  In my program I didn't include pictures of introductions, and instead concentrated on blooms that I've seen this summer that I really liked. Two new seedlings that I gave the most attention to were 4-564 and 6-41.  Seedling 4-564 is my striped seedling, and I let everyone know that I've decided to name this seedling MASTER SERGEANT KENNETH LANE.  I sent Sergeant Lane a picture of the bloom and of course I will get a plant to him later this summer.  I'm showing a picture of Sergeant Lane.  At the time the picture was taken he was a young Sergeant but by the time he retired he had reached the rank of Master Sergeant.  I think Sergeant Lane's name helps to emphasize the "stripes" in Seedling 4-564.  And Sergeant Lane is a fine American, and his hometown is Colquitt, Georgia.

Seedling 6-41 is so incredible, and back on May 27, 2016, in this Blog, I showed how it compares to the diploid, SEBASTIAN THE CRAB.  Of course Seedling 6-41 is made from TET. SEBASTIAN THE CRAB.  At first 6-41 had 3 scapes, and each scape supported beautiful, beautiful 9-inch blooms.  The scapes were very strong.  6-41 now has a "rebloom" scape that has 7-way branching.  I've never seen the diploid SEBASTIAN with any lateral branching, but now the rebloom scape has 4 laterals.  This is just magnificent.  I can't wait to see the rebloom flower, and I know that I have an introduction.  I am just so, so happy with 6-41.

It was good to have been able to participate in the Hybridizer's Forum.  Thank you Brenda Macy for your invitation.

The first garden our bus visited on Friday morning was Nancy Smith's "On Eagle's Wings."  Diana was met by Nancy and also by a young lady who was helping Nancy.  I took their picture.  I looked all around the garden, and I particularly liked the "Cat Garden."  In this garden Nancy had a cat sculpture, and then there were many daylilies that had cat names.  One daylily that I particularly noticed was BROOKWOOD BLACK KITTEN, which ultimately won the Florida Sunshine Cup.  The Garden where I saw it later was at Doris Stonska's Black Horse Garden.  Both clumps were beautiful.

The second garden we visited was owned by Rebecca Scarboro and Nelson Ratchford, and the name of the garden was "The Ever Changing Garden.  There was a bee in the garden that invited us to "buzz around," and so we did.  There were windows in the daylily beds, there was a waterfall and a stream, and I particularly liked the gladiolas, and Rebecca and Nelson had a very large bed of yellow gladiolas. I had to have a picture, and as you can see it was beautiful bed.  Alas we had to go, but a new garden was waiting.

The next garden we visited was "Two Cats and a Buckeye," maintained and owned by Ellen and Gary Carrithers.  Diana met Gary as we came off the bus, and I took their picture together on Gary's Golf Cart.  Then Diana and I had our picture taken on a seat for two in the garden.  It is always a pleasure to be seen with daylilies everywhere in sight.  I must also report that Ellen had a large clump of LYDIA'S REGAL ROBE, and it was covered with blooms.  Even though it has rained quite hard before we arrived at the garden, LYDIA was nevertheless quite beautiful.

The 5th garden we visited on Friday was owned by Julie and Bill Wahl.  Diana was genuinely intrigued by the the little house on the Yellow Brick Road.  It was truly nice, and indeed, so nice that Diana went in the small front door and I took her pictures as she looked through the small window.  The Wahls worked quite a bit to build such a structure.  Another adventure that we had was to visit with the Wahl horses in the pasture.  Diana was greeted by the horses but I think they were looking for a treat, perhaps like a few carrots.

After our fun visiting gardens all day, we went back to the hotel and rested for a while.  Then it was time to go to dinner.  We sat with many friends who we rode with on the bus.  We talked about the gardens and the things we had done together during the day.  After dinner we had an official AHS Business Meeting, then Awards were formally presented.  I am so proud that my LYDIA'S REGAL ROBE won the AHS "Award of Merit."  Indeed it had the second highest number of votes for the Award.  Thanks everyone for your votes!

On Saturday morning we were again up very early and we soon left to go and visit David Kirchhoff and Mort Morss at "Daylily World."  We had our picture taken with David, and I was just so delighted to see their home in this part of the hinterlands of Kentucky.  I was also pleased to see Sandy Holmes' great daylily, WALT LOWRY. which ultimately won the Ned Roberts UF/Spider Award  It was at its very best at Daylily World.

We then went to visit Rich and Anna Marie Rosen at their home in downtown Frankfort, Kentucky.  The Rosen home was built in 1913 for Graham Vreeland who was a Newspaper publisher.  The home is just magnificent, but our focus was Rich's garden.  We were drawn to the most recently acquired Rosen sculpture in the back yard.  Diana relaxed as I stood beside the sculpture as our picture was taken.  What a wonderful sculpture to see.  Thanks Rich for having us come to visit your garden.  I liked the collection of "blue bottles" boldly displayed at such a gracious home.

We then went to lunch at The Buffalo Trace Distillery.  We visited Warehouse "C" that was built in 1885.  It is just a magnificent structure that holds Bourbon that is being aged in oak whiskey barrels.  Wow.  The fragrance inside the Warehouse is that of 24,000 barrels of whiskey that we were told had a heavenly fragrance called "The Angel's Share."  The tour of the Warehouse was just so delightful.  At the end of the tour we were all offered the opportunity to actually taste the Buffalo Trace Bourbon.  It was good.  Indeed, it was very good.  Then we tried a product called "Bourbon Cream."  Apparently it is often mixed with Root Beer, but I just liked the Bourbon Cream.  Then we went to lunch where we had lots and lots of BBQ.  On the way back to the bus we all noticed the beautiful daylilies growing on the property.  We later learned that the daylilies were planted by the local Club.

We then made our last stop of the day at "Creekside Gardens" owned by Bill and Chris Schardein.  I was very surprised to see the elaborate masonry holding the daylily beds in front of the Schardein home, and I had to go and see these right away.  Then I walked the gardens paying close attention to the pond where there were so many very large fish,  There were lots of refreshments, and plenty of different types of raspberry and lemonade drinks.  I had my picture made with Bill who has been our friend for so many years.  Finally, our friends on the bus decided to have their picture taken together on the Schardein driveway.  Then, back to the hotel.

At the hotel we said goodbye to each other, and then I received a genuine surprise from from LaVere Webster.  LaVere is a well educated man and quite an author.  Indeed, he has written a fascinating book entitled "Many Faces: John Wesley."  John Wesley is, of course, the founder of The Methodist Church, and is a renouned Missionary, Preacher and Healer of both the body and soul.  Thanks LaVere.  As a Methodist I will always treasure this wonderful gift.

Had a wonderful dinner again, and said goodbye to our daylily friends.  Thanks to the Kentucky Club for hosting the AHS National Convention.  You did a masterful work!


Sunday, June 26, 2016

2017 Introductions

Hello Daylily Friends,

I have been having a high adventure watching our seedlings grow, and then making decisions about our introductions for this coming fall/winter.  I am going to introduce Seedling 11-318, and the parentage is as follows:  (Varsity Orange x Tet. Orange Velvet).  It is dormant.  It is 37" tall, 6-way branching, 28 buds, with a 7" flower.  It is a late bloomer, and the only difficulty with it is that it is a difficult pod parent.  The second orange daylily that I will introduce is Seedling 5-787, and again, the parentage is: (Varsity Orange x Tet. Orange Velvet).  It is also dormant, and is a late bloomer.  It is 32" tall, 5-way branching, 30 buds, and a 6" flower.  It also is a difficult pod parent.  I think that both 11-318 and 5-787 are difficult pod parents because they bloom late when the heat here in Georgia is so hot.  Like today, Saturday, it was 100 degrees.  Who can set a pod in this weather?

When I say it was 100 degrees, I make this report because this was shown on TV.  I was watching the news while I was typing this Blog entry, and there on the screen I saw the report.  100 degrees. It is usually about 88 degrees this time of year, but today the heat was just awful..

Back to daylilies.  Another daylily that I will introduce will be named KENNESAW RASPBERRY SORBET.  My dear wife went to the home of our friends, Jim and Mary Jo Reeves, and the Reeves grow Raspberries.  Diana came home with a bowl of Raspberries, which we ate for days, and I just decided that my new seedling should have a name that includes the word, "Raspberry."  It is Seedling 3-351, and it is a semi-evergreen.  It is 26" tall, 3-way branching, 15 buds, and a 6 1/2" flower.  It is pod and pollen fertile, and it is just incredible when it blooms.  When friends were in the garden over the past several summers, many wanted to take it home, but I just couldn't sell it because I knew that it would be introduced.  If you add KENNESAW RASPBERRY SORBET to your garden, you will be glad that I saved it to be a 2017 introduction.

Another introduction will be Seedling 5-782.  It is a semi-evergreen, it blooms in midseason, and then reblooms late in the season.  It is a seedling crossed with a seedling, which is unusual for me, since I very seldom introduce seedlings crossed with seedlings.  It is 24" tall, 3-way branching, 17 buds, with a 5 1/2" flower.  Seedling 5-782 is so distinctive because it has such rich colors.  There is the deep, green eye, the lovely yellow self, with the alluring and gorgeous bold eye and edge.  You will love this in your garden!

I must mention one other seedling that I will introduce.  It is Seedling 3-432, and it is an unusual form.  One of its parents is WALT LOWRY, and the other parent is WINDMASTER.  It is a daylily with one of the most sturdy scapes that I've yet put on the market.  The scape doesn't bend, rather, it just holds the weight of the flower, quite vertically and quite nicely, aloof in the summer breeze.  It has a beautiful purple color, with a very noticeably green eye.  It is strong, and most importantly, it is pod and pollen fertile.  It is often hard to have an unusual form to be pod fertile, but 3-432 is pod fertile.

I want to travel back in time now to the middle of May, 2016.  Our Club went on a genuine adventure by Bus to middle Florida to participate in the Florida Mecca.  While I would like to comment on every garden that that we visited, and I may do this over the course of the next several months, for the moment I want to comment on Floyd Cove Daylily Garden.  We arrived at the Nursery and had our picture taken.  We had so much ahead of us to see on our Florida journey!

We went to see Guy and Karen Pierce.  Two fabulous people who love daylilies every day, all day, and work as hard as any two people I've ever known.  When we arrived at the Floyd Cove Garden we met Guy and he allowed me to walk with him as he walked through his seedlings.  What an adventure!  I saw so many glorious daylilies, but one daylily in particular caught my eye.  I do not know the seedling number, if there is one, but I liked the daylily because it has a massive green eye, and a lovely purple edge.  For years growers have done their best to produce such a flower, an edge with no eye, but no one anywhere has matched the Flower that I saw Guy growing.  I'm showing a picture.  Results like this come only with hard, hard work, and as I said, Guy is a hard worker.

I've got an update on my Seedling 4-564.  This incredible daylily has bloomed and bloomed and bloomed.  I've tried and tried to make improvements on it, but I haven't had much success.  The most recent improvement is Seedling 6-49.  I think that 6-49 has helped emphasize the "stripes," but I've lost the edge I have on 4-564.  So, I've crossed 6-49 back with TOOTH FAIRY PRINCESS and I have quite a few seeds.  Should see improvement with the edge within the next 2 years.  But I have to also show Seedling 4-564.  And more news:  I have decided on a name for this new seedling.  It will be called SERGEANT KENNETH LANE.  It will be named for the most outstanding Non Commissioned Officer that I met during my service of 10 years in the Military.  More about this soon.

Lily Rae loves to ride her bicycles.  She actually has two bicycles: One is a Pink Huffy, and the other is a Princess.  Lily Rae rides the Pink Huffy the best.  I think that this is because she can get both feet on the ground quickly and this helps prevent any serious falls.  On the Princess, which is a bigger bicycle, she can only get her toes on the ground so there is a greater danger of a slip.  When we went to the Circus/Fair with Lily Rae the Clowns were riding their bicycles and didn't hold the handle bars.  They put their hands in the air.  Well, to my shock, Lily Rae has unexpectedly done this several times while riding her Pink Huffy.  It is genuinely interesting to see her try something new, but as her Grandfather I confess that I get so nervous.  Can't wait to see her again.

Looking forward to the National Convention in Kentucky this coming week.

More news soon.