Bare root orange lily - how big will it get?

lizzie_nhOctober 2, 2011

I just ordered a number of items to be planted in fall, including some bare root orange daylilies (the kind that now grow in the wild along the roadside, and which apparently are not technically daylilies.) Each quantity of '1' includes 3 bare roots, and I ordered two, so I should get 6 bare roots. How big can I expect these to get when they come up next year? One flower per root? I'd like to plant these at the end of my driveway in a rural area - preferably three roots on each side, but I don't want a really spindly, sparse look, so now I am thinking I should plant all six roots together, and then transplant in a few years, as they spread. (Or alternatively, buy more bare root plants.)

Also, how quickly might I expect these plants to spread?


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I wish we had the option to edit our subject lines...

In a nutshell - does anyone know what I can expect to get, the first year, from an orange lily plant sold as a "bare root" (purchased from American Meadows)? Is this is single root? Will it grow more than one flower?

    Bookmark   October 2, 2011 at 4:01PM
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TulsaRose, Tulsa OK(7a)

If you received Hemerocallis fulva they are indeed daylilies. Some of the common names are Ditch Lily, Outhouse Lily and Tiger Lily. The bloom stems will grow to 24" - 36" (sometimes to 48") tall and reproduce, slowly but surely over the next few years.

There is some good, detailed information at American Meadows website.

Here is a link that might be useful: Hemerocallis fulva

    Bookmark   October 2, 2011 at 6:27PM
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Too bad you don't live closer to north central CT - you could come and dig up as many as you want. I didn't plant them but they grow like crazy along the road which is my eastern property boundary. I haven't noticed them multiplying at any particularly fast pace but I also don't pay any particular attention to them. I have roughly 50 mature clumps of designer daylilies and am working to grow more perennials that attract hummingbirds & butterflies. Kind of keeps my attention focused on seed germination, seedling growth & bed design and away from other areas of the garden.

Most daylilies produce multiple flower buds since the flowers individually only last a single day. I have one named 'Ann Warner' that produces 30-40 buds every year on multiple stems. That said, I have several clumps my brother planted 20-25 years ago that seem to produce about the same number of scapes (stems) each year.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2011 at 7:09PM
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Ah yes, it is Hemerocallis fulva. I should have said it is apparently not a true lily, not that it's not a true daylily.

If only I lived closer! They grow wild here, all over, but I am wary of digging them up. We own a fair amount of land which borders a road, and part even has lower-voltage powerlines across it, and everyone assumes parts of the land - especially near the powerlines - are public, when it's all private. So, I understand annoyance over trespassing, so I'm no longer comfortable doing the sort of roadside digging I used to think nothing of. But I want the wild lily look for my yard! I might be able to ask some local property owners if I could take some, but I'm not sure anyone would want them disturbed.

They're fairly expensive - $15 or so for 3 roots, so I don't want to go wild with buying bare roots, but I'm not sure how thick they'll look the first year.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2011 at 7:42PM
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I know these as "old-fashioned day lily," that's just the neighborhood term here. You often see them around very old gardens because they survive years of abandonment when no one takes care of the yard and everything else dies.

They are extremely drought-tolerant, and will subsist without any additional water and also survive being covered by bushes or weeds, though they probably won't bloom in that condition.

They multiply vigorously - but only expand outward 6 inches per year or so and are easy to confine with any type of barrier or siding.

I would expect them to multiply by a factor of 3 per year. A large clump of them is actually still connected by the roots that produced them (that is, if they all originated from the same root) so tend to perform better when they're all supporting each other. I think they fact that they maintain the rhizomes that connected them helps avoid the "doughnut" shape a lot of other perennials get when they're too crowded and die off in the middle; these don't really do that and only need to be transplanted to move or propagate them.

They'll set out new shoots year-round but I think the shoots that bloom have to be a year old. So I would expect 1 blooming stem per root you get next July.

The following year you could have triple that, and the next year you can have triple that again, and so forth.

    Bookmark   October 3, 2011 at 2:07AM
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Thank you! Very helpful. Now, to decide whether I can stand a sparse look for the first year, or whether I should plant all 6 bare roots together for a fuller look, and transplant later when they have multiplied....

    Bookmark   October 5, 2011 at 11:09AM
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Oh, dear, Lizzie, please send me an email through my GW page before buying any more of these or any other common (or even some less common) plants. I can certainly provide you with more if you are anywhere near me in NH.

Also, you should check out the New England forum where there is a plant swap near Manchester each spring and fall. New gardeners aren't obligated to bring plants.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2011 at 8:25AM
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