Tuesday, March 15, 2011


Hello Daylily Friends,

As many of you probably know from reading my posts in the past, I am trying to convert HANDSOME ROSS CARTER. I thought that I had it converted last year. Indeed, I even had a growing fan with a bud, but sadly, it just died. In hindsight, I think that I allowed too much heat exposure to the black pot, and that this "baked" the roots. I will not make this mistake again. Because some of you may not have seen HANDSOME ROSS CARTER, I am posting a picture that I took of the flower this past summer. It is a beautiful orange with plenty of green in the throat. I'm trying to convert HANDSOME ROSS CARTER because I was asked to by my friend, Josh Jacquez. I am also trying to convert it because now I am working much more with oranges, and I need a Tetraploid HANDSOME ROSS CARTER. Now that you have seen a picture of the flower of HANDSOME ROSS CARTER, I am also showing the growing fans that I brought into Diana's basement for Colchicine treatment back on February 5, 2011.

When Colchicine was first applied to HANDSOME ROSS CARTER on February 3 and 4, 2011, there was no absorption of the chemical into the plant. I was disappointed. So, I cut the plants again to get closer to the growing tip, and then I added the equivocalent of three (3) milliliters of DMSO to the Colchicine, plus a few drops of "red dye." You can see Plant Number #3 on February 5, 2011, after it was treated with the Colchicine containing more of the DMSO along with the red dye. I then again treated Plant Number #3 once per day on February 6 and 7, 2011, and on February 8, 2011, I treated the plant twice. It should be interesting to look at Plant Number #3 on February 9, 2011, the day after all treatment had stopped. You can see that the plant is quite "swelled," and that some of the foilage is thick and is breaking around the outer bands. This thickening and breaking of the foilage suggests that the Colchicine was absorbed.

The next picture is perhaps the most important step in trying to achieve a conversion. I took my knife and cut away the outer bands of foilage, leaving only the area near the growing tip. I did this to help avoid any rot, and to help the plant grow only where it needs to grow: at the growing tip. I know that it probably looks strange to cut away the outer foilage, but I have learned time and again that most often if there is no trimming there isn't going to be a conversion. Rot will appear and the plant will die. If the plant can go through the trimming, without water, and continue to grow, then there is real hope that a conversion can be achieved.

The next picture that I am showing was taken today after I came home from a hard day's labor in the law office. It shows HANDSOME ROSS CARTER, Plant Number #3. Why am I showing Plant Number #3? Because of the five plants that I treated Plant Number #3 looks like it is the best of the group. Plant Number #2 might be converted, and Plant Number #5 could be converted if it continues to grow. I do not believe that Plants #1 and #4 are converted. I think that Plant Number #3 is converted because it has the hardest foilage and this applies to all of the foilage, including the growing tip. Plant Number #3 will continue to receive the most attention. I would note that I did not water any of the HANDSOME ROSS CARTER plants until March 4, 2011. This is a long time to go without water.

Over the next few days I will also show my conversion work with BIG KISS.



  1. Hi Bill, what kind of grow lights do you have set up for growing your plants in the basement, that could be another blog for you. Thanks, Jim Elliott

  2. Hi Jim,
    I do not use any "grow lights." There is only light from a nearby window. I have found that while the plants are being treated that grow lights are just not necessary. I used them once, many years ago, but had no success. So, as I say, I just don't use them. Good question.

  3. B,

    Of all the orange daylilies I use for pod setters, Dan Trimmer's Orange Blossom Trail seems to be the best. Seems to set a pod on every try. Great genetics in it with Patsy Cline on one side. I have yet to see the kids bloom. Loved your entry about Browns Ferry. My wife and I hope to see it next year at peak bloom. I have bought daylilies from the Douglas's over the years and been very pleased. By the way, last weekend Cleveland got hit with 12 inches of snow. It was miserable. Hope to move in the next couple years. Nothing against Ohio, I love our summers, just can't take the snow anymore. Hope Diana is feeling better!

  4. Hi Paul,
    I have been pleasantly surprised by ORANGE BLOSSOM TRAIL. It does grow well here in North Georgia, and I am anxious to see seedlings from a cross between it and my TET. ORANGE VELVET conversion. 12 inches. Difficult. Diana is getting better, but her recovery is still at least a week away. You will truly enjoy seeing Browns Ferry Gardens. You will see great daylilies including my own VARSITY ORANGE, KENNESAW MOUNTAIN HAYRIDE, DIANA'S EVENING GOWN, and CHILLED ORANGE SORBET. You will also enjoy seeing their new seedlings. They truly have a "grand" garden.