Questions: Potting daylilies (first timer)

Julia NY(6)May 26, 2008

I'm planning to pot some of my new arrivals since the bed they will go into isn't ready yet.

I'd like to know what is the best method for potting these.

Pot sizes? 9", 12"?

Plant them the same as when you put in the ground with the little mound in the center?

Soil mixture that worked best for you?


How much sun? At least 8 hours?

I know its alot of questions, but since I'm new to this and never potted a daylily I need some help.



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tweetypye(z8/sc AL)

Julia, I'm in a warmer zone than you, so my answers may not be what you're looking for but this is what I do.

1)The larger the pot the better.
3)a good potting soil, Miracle Grow or Expert(Walmart brand) mixed half and half with pine fines. I don't know if you can get the pine fines where you live.
4)Water in well when first planted, then only when the soil seems dry afterwards.
5)When I've put mine in pots to hold, I try to only let them get morning sun and keep them in afternoon shade, but as I stated above, I'm in a much warmer zone than you.

Hopefully, someone from your zone will give you their opinions on this matter.
Good luck,

    Bookmark   May 26, 2008 at 8:48PM
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Julia NY(6)

Thanks Jan.
I was thinking to use the garden soil that we got from a local nursery and then amend with some manure I got from Walmart. Do you think that would be okay?


    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 9:34AM
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The key is good drainage and garden soil will pack and give no air to the roots. Go to Home Depot or Walmart and look for either very fine bark mulch or what they call composted bark mulch. It is cheap and you can either mix it half and half with potting soil or if they are not going to be in the pots very long you can just use the compost that you buy in the 2 cu ft bags. It is very inexpensive. I have all my lilies in big pots and drainage is the key. I water my pots every other day or when they look dry. I put mine where they only get some morning sun, it is very hot here, so in hot areas shade is essential. When they start growing you can feed them. I use time released fertilizer that lasts for 6 months, sold also at good ole Walmart, "Expert Gardener". Same potting soil. Good luck.

Dot in Texas

    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 9:58AM
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frederico(Zone 7, NJ)

I'd use the smallest container in which the daylily fits comfortably; if there is too much soil in proportion to root mass (in the container) there is more chance of rot.

One gallon to three gallon sizes work well.

Fine Pine Bark is an excellent idea, and can be mixed half-and-half with peat moss. You will then need to fertilize, of course. You can add composted manure to the mix, water with Miracle-Grow, etc...

    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 12:05PM
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I just went to look at the bag of compost and it says, Scotchmans Choice Organic Compost. I'm sure it was bought at Walmart.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 12:19PM
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I'd use the smallest container in which the daylily fits comfortably; if there is too much soil in proportion to root mass (in the container) there is more chance of rot.

I don't think this is a good idea. The smaller the pot, the more it is affected by temperatures and current weather. Careful watering is much more important, if not critical. I plant a single to double fan of the average sized daylily in a 2 gallon pot. Larger plants get proportionally larger pots. Move the plants into part shade in late spring through early fall.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 12:29PM
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Last year I kept mine in the fridge in the box for a month or more (way too hot and humid for extra work outside in Aug), then planted with a bulb planter and kept watered well. They came up really fast, a couple were pretty thin. I didn't lose any, and they all are up and more fans this spring, haven't shown any signs of blooming yet, don't know when that is for my zone, they are supposed to repeat, but it has been unseasonably rainy and cold. Yesterday had to get out and put the fan back together because it's too early to turn on the ac, and now today I've got the heat on and it's in the 50's and feels much colder because it's rained a lot. Can't believe this for May. Some established plants (roses) (haven't seen any lilies blooming anywhere yet) are on schedule and some, even very old ones, are quite a bit behind.

I would do it again rather than pot them up (which I have done and do with other plants). How long will it take you to get the bed ready?

    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 2:44PM
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Julia NY(6)

Thanks everyone for the suggestions. Very much appreciated.

aliska12000: How are you using a bulb planter for planting daylilies?


    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 6:17PM
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Julia, maybe you caught me out. I can't remember now that you ask. I think I did use the shovel to get the hole a little deeper and wide enough. I haven't planted that many, one batch of 10 or 12, 2 different freebies.

So sorry, please forgive. I use the bulb planter for anything I can get away with planting that way and have planted so much the last couple of years, I just forgot.

I'm still not sure if I used it on some or not. Think not but sure would if I divided up a bulb to make more and the soil isn't too settled. Then if the hole isn't deep enough, I'd loosen more with a knife, trowel, and scoop out with my hand.

The last one I planted was pretty big, and I don't think I got it deep enough, but it is at ground level same as it was growing when dug because the leaves had been trimmed, didn't care all that much about that one, and they're pretty tough.

But I know I stored them in the fridge for at least a month. I was so worried I called them, *think* they said I should have soaked them for a bit, but I definitely remember planting them right from the fridge to the bed. I wouldn't have held them culpable if I had screwed up.

I'm not saying it's a good thing to store them in the fridge, but I've done it twice, once for the daylilies and twice for some Asians w/a freebie daylily, but not that long and would definitely not recommend it for Asians because they seem to get mold on them (which sometimes doesn't matter). The dl's stayed clean and were very dry (I wouldn't moisten them in the fridge). Same vendor.

If I did pot them up temporarily, I don't know whose opinion I'd choose. I posted this today on the hosta forum, the soil has only been tilled there, just no time or energy to amend that spot, and isn't all that great but not clay. Plus I'm fighting roots and suckers from a nearby apple tree. I'm sure somebody else would do a better job of it.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2008 at 9:17PM
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