Tuesday, April 23, 2013

New Shoes for Little Lily Rae!

Hello Daylily Friends,

Things have been happening so fast in the Greenhouse.  Practically every day that I walk inside to see the blooms, there is something new that creates new interest and new opportunity.  This past Saturday, for example, we had a very special day.  Our Pastor, Rev. Elaine Wilder, her husband, Paul, and their precious son, Elliott, along with Paul's sister, Brooks, came by to see the daylilies.  We were so pleased that they did, particularly because it was a special day in the Greenhouse for the "Green" edged beauties.  My Seedling 2-426 was blooming again, and it was gorgeous.  I am so proud of 2-426, and I have six (6) fans of it growing outside.  If it does outside what it has been doing in the Greenhouse, then I'm going to be a very happy Gardener.  Anyway, I've had another chartreuse edged daylily to bloom, and it is Seedling 3-375.  The parents of 3-375 include Salter's HOLY GUACAMOLE, along with my own cross between IRISH HALO and FRINGY.  I really like 3-375 because it is 38" tall, with 5-way branching.  By crossing 2-426 and 3-375, I should hopefully raise the height of 2-426.  So much happens with hybridizing work, and every day is a new day with daylily work.  So many opportunities to make changes to daylilies.

Yesterday Little Lily Rae was over, and she was wearing "new shoes" that her father bought her.  She was so proud of her shoes, and when she would walk around she would look down at them.  They are Nike tennis shoes, and they have what is called a "swish" on them.  I asked Lily Rae to show me the swish, and she pointed to the bottom of her shoes.  Sure enough, there was a swish there!  Well, as always, Lily Rae and I, we walk together in the Greenhouse.  Sure enough there was a large 7" inch bloom on Seedling 3-349.  Such beautiful colors on the flower. It is a cross between the following parents: (Red Sapphire x Red Top Mountain).  3-349 is 34" tall, with 6-way branching, and 26 buds.  It is so nice to bloom such a large daylily that I anticipate that most enthusiasts will want to grow it because of its height and size.  Anyway, no matter what blooms, when Lily Rae is over it is a good time.  She is the best!

Well we've also been experimenting
with growing "doubles."  A good while back my friend Marlee Price, brought me a diploid daylily named SUNGLASSES NEEDED.  It had won "Best in Show" in Savannah where Marlee was a Judge.  Marlee was so impressed with the flower that she got me a plant, and I eventually converted it from a diploid to a tetraploid.  Last year, with only limited pollen, I was able to make five (5) seeds using Nancy Eller's BUZZ SAW BOOGIE as the pod parent.  Then, today, there was a massive bloom.  I now call the new flower Seedling 3-374.  It is 42" tall with a nine (9) inch flower.  Yes, I did say a nine inch flower!  A massive double.  In fact, I've never seen a double this large.  I wouldn't necessarily expect everyone to accept my report, but I have four witnesses.  My witnesses are our friends Jim and Kay Chappell from Warrior, Alabama, and Chuck and Linda Winington from Homewood, Alabama.  They saw me put the ruler up next to 3-374, and they can each verify that it was, indeed, a nine inch double.  Thanks to Jim and Kay, and Chuck and Linda for visiting today.  It is nice to see something new in daylilies like a massive, new double, on a tall, strong scape.

There were two other blooms in
the Greenhouse today that also should be mentioned.  The first is a lovely red beauty.  It is Seedling 3-378, and the parents are as follows:  (11-269 x Hotlanta).  Aside from the beautiful red color, Seedling 3-378 is 38" tall with 6-way branching, 33 buds, and a 6" flower.  I am so pleased with this progress!  11-269 is a cross between SANTA'S LITTLE HELPER and RUNNING HOT, and it is 34" tall with 4-way branching.  I used 11-269 with HOTLANTA because I didn't then have TET. WAXEN SPLENDOR to use, which I now have, and indeed will use to full benefit in just a few more weeks.  The other new bloom that must also be mentioned is Seedling 3-356, and the cross is as follows: [(1-385 x 1-337) x Tet. Rose F. Kennedy].  The bloom is so beautiful; such differences in colors.  I couldn't make up my mind as to how to use 3-356, so I simply crossed it again with TET. ROSE F. KENNEDY.  There are many other blooms appearing from RFK crosses, and I will report again when there is something exceptional.

That is where we are today.  Tomorrow morning I'm looking forward to seeing a new bloom on TET. HANDSOME ROSS CARTER.  Having this pollen to use again will be exciting.



  1. Hi Bill, So many beautiful seedlings...& that double...WOW...It was nice you had friends to wittness your "delight" of it's
    beauty & size!
    Enjoyed Lilly Rae modeling her new shoes....So much FUN to see them...just adorible!! My shippment hasn't arrived yet,but I'm ready...Maybe tomorrow or Thurs. I'll let you know...;)

  2. Thanks Lori,

    Surely your order will arrive today. It was sent out on Monday at around 4:00 p.m. The Post Office promises 2-days for delivery, and 92.6% of the time they keep their commitment.

    I am so pleased with this massive double. I know that more can be done with the conversion. This spring I will have much more pollen to use, and I should have more opportunities.

    Oh, and Little Lily Rae! The best news on the Post, and of course her "new shoes" command the title of the Post.

    Thanks for your note.


  3. Bill,

    Wow, the 9" double is a show stopper! I think David Kirchhoff is gonna want that one. (king of the doubles.)

    Got a quick question for you....I have some of my seeds planted in containers and after they germinate it would seem some either get hit with insects or just fall over and die. Do you spray your young seeds with anything and what sort of soil do you use to start your seeds? Appreciate any info. Thanks!

  4. Wow seedling 2-246 will take your breath away! I sincerily hope it is hardy enough to be registered. I would try crossing Kermit with 3-375 to see what that does. I'm not sure I would use it on 2-246 as it's only fault is a little on the short side too.


  5. Hi Paul,

    I never spray my seeds or my seedlings with anything. I do remember several years ago that I did have some rust, and I lightly sprayed over the top for that and it was never a problem again.

    The soil that I use is just a top soil that I buy from a local supplier. It costs about $40.00 for a truck load. I do not do anything to amend the soil, but of course I do add a small amount of slow release fertilizer, Epsom salts, and Bayer tree and shrub. I start all daylilies in the Greenhouse. 2/3rd to 3/4trs go outside; about 900 stay in the Greenhouse but are put into one gallon pots.

    All seedlings are started in 3" peat pots.

    Hope this helps some.


  6. Hi Marlon,

    I'll probably register 2-246 regardless of its height, just as I will probably register 3-374 regardless of its lack of multiple branches. I think sometimes the flower is just more important than some characteristics that we might prefer.

    I'm really proud of both daylilies.


  7. I am joining everyone to say that 2-426 is a true beauty ! congrats !