How About A Sunday Stroll?

Echinacea 'Pink Double Delight'
Echinacea ‘Pink Double Delight’

Good morning. Grab your coffee or tea and and please join me for a stroll through my little corner of paradise. I’ve always pictured heaven as a garden, and I hope that the good Lord will let me work in His; but then, I wonder . . . what would I do if every leaf and flower were perfect? What if there were no weeds? What if the roses were always in bloom and never needed deadheading?

How could I relax in such a place?

These are the kind of things I ponder about as I stroll. Then, I shrug my shoulders, sip my tea and leave it up to God. It’s out of my hands anyway.

Today is a very busy day, so we should meander in our imaginations for awhile before it begins. Not only is it Father’s Day, it’s also Sunday Stroll, Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day and Green Thumb Sunday. For all of these blogging events, I’m sharing more daylily blooms, along with other garden lovelies. Isn’t Echinacea ‘Pink Double Delight’ (left) adorned in the prettiest frock? Check out those lower petals with their pinked edges. Can you stand it?

Hemerocallis 'Red Suspenders'
Hemerocallis ‘Red Suspenders’

I bought ‘Red Suspenders’ (Webster 1990) (right) from my COHS friend, Stephen. It took off in only one season. ‘Red Suspenders’ is an unusual form; crispate. Crispate refers to the pinch at the end of the petals. As this plant ages, and summer temperatures rise, it should crispate even more. Unusual forms are not the same thing as spiders. The spider aficionados are very clear about this. I have some spider daylilies, but none are camera ready today. If you’d like to see some, go to Tinker’s Gardens Forum and do a search of their database. There are many daylily classifications and descriptions, but I won’t bore you with them all. If you’re interested in terms and other information, please visit the American Hemerocallis website.

Hemerocallis 'Killer'
Hemerocallis ‘Killer’ (Stamile 1992)

I have a thing for red and purple daylilies. It is hard to capture the purple ones (I almost wrote on film, but that would show my age, wouldn’t it?) because they have a lot of red pigment, and often turn out redder than they are in photos. ‘Killer’ (Stamile 1992,) shown in profile, is a favorite of mine. My friend, Wanda, gave it to me a couple of years ago. I don’t just like it because it’s purple. The scapes (stems) and blossoms have tremendous substance. Can you see how well it’s holding up to the rain? It is very hard to hybridize reds and purples that are thick enough to tolerate sun and heat because daylily blooms are comprised of mostly water. A hint: If you want lots of blooms, feed your daylily with a high nitrogen fertilizer in the spring and water it heavily as the scapes form.

\'Bella Lugosi\' with \'Reflection in Time\' in back
Hemerocallis ‘Bella Lugosi’ with H. ‘Reflections in Time’ behind.

At right, are ‘Bela Lugosi’ (C. Hanson 1995) with ‘Reflections in Time’ (Salter 2002) behind it. Bela is another great purple that holds up well in the sun. I planted it next to a brick red/orange daylily and another red one. They’re in the center of this triangle-shaped bed to draw the eye to the middle. I surrounded them with blue and yellow flowers to soften some of the bright color.

Tiered gardens on the right.
Tiered borders on the right.

This border is part of the view we see to our left as we walk out the rear French doors. HH and I finished these gardens last summer and nearly killed ourselves shoveling soil. I’m pleased with how the plants filled in, although I’m running out of room again, so I’m starting to cull some of my flowers, including some daylilies.

Once we walk down the steps and turn to the right, we see this allee filled with pink and yellow daylilies because the Diva said she wanted a place to take her wedding photos someday. (Teen girls dream of these things. I remember.)

allée of pink and yellow daylilies.
Allée of pink and yellow daylilies with Tightwad Red crapemyrtle shrubs.

In addition to the pink and yellow daylilies, I’ve also planted some with love and wedding themes. I don’t like all of the daylilies in this bed, so I’m going to be moving some in September to make the color flow better and look more graceful. As you know, pink and yellow are the Diva’s favorite colors.

Whenever I share this garden, I always think of the allée of apple trees Martha Stewart planted for her daughter’s wedding when Alexis was born. Years ago, in an essay for the magazine, Martha wrote that when her daughter chose to marry elsewhere, Martha cut down all of the trees. For me, that essay was a cautionary tale about expectations. Whether the Diva ends up using her allée or not isn’t important. However, choosing the plants with her was.


  1. Frances says:

    Hi Dee, sorry so late, I am way behind on the blog reading after being away for a week. I also posted about daylilies, today, June 20 and it seems we both have Bela Lugosi featured. He is new to us as of last year and has been great. I remember the Martha story, that was in the magazine before it went omnimedia I think. I thought it was a great idea and too bad it didn’t come true but don’t think she should have cut down the trees. Can you picture the scene when Alexis told her about getting married on the sly? I still love the old set she had with the tv show with no audience and the old magazine format. Oh well, evolution, right? You have the right idea about your daughter’s future, it cannot be predicted! Great post.
    Frances at Faire Garden

    Thanks, Frances. I loved your post on daylilies. I’m glad I wasn’t there for any of the feuds between Alexis and Martha, but especially that one. I loved the old t.v. show too. It was wonderful. The new one seems stilted now in comparison. The old show and magazine took us into her world, and it looked so peaceful.~~Dee

  2. Mary Ann Newcomer says:

    And you know, I am thinking Miz Stewart was pretty damn crabby when she whacked down an entire allee of apple trees because her daughter chose to marry somewhere other than where Miz Stewart thought she should. Whose wedding was it? Off with their heads!

    Yes, I remember being struck by the senseless slaughter of the trees.~~Dee

  3. If you really love me, you will send me a start of Suspenders all crispate and everything. That is flat out gorgeous!

    Oh, you want him bloomed out and everything, huh!~~Dee

  4. I’m even later than Robin – so much time is spent hand watering that I’m still reading bloom day posts, Dee!
    This post is lovely – the way you designed the borders as you exit the French doors is just perfect, and I’ve just added ‘Bela Lugosi’ to my coveted plants list.

    That’s a pretty sad story about Martha and her plans. Somehow I think your story will be a much happier one – with you and the Diva enjoying the ‘now’ garden instead of fixating on some future expectations.

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

    Hi Annie, thank you so much. You’ll like ‘Bela.’ He’s a wonder.~~Dee

  5. Robin says:

    I’m a little late for the Sunday stroll, but I enjoyed it none-the-less.

    I hope the diva chooses to one day be married in your lovely yard. Now that is gardening with a purpose!

    One can never be late for the Sunday stroll. Thanks, Robin.~~Dee

  6. Lovely, Dee! I had no idea there were so many colors in the daylily family. I think we mostly see yellow in CA and they are in abundance. They are used in shopping malls a lot. (Don’t freak.) :)No wonder I’m unschooled! That story about Martha is sad and rather dramatic. But it’s not a big surprise that Martha would be rather controlling. Sigh. She does so much good, however. And I was very impressed to see her do a yogic headstand recently! Maybe this tree cutting incident would look different in that position? 😉
    Kathryn xox

    Thanks. You probably see a lot of Stella D’oro. We use it in medians and parking lots too because it’s hard to kill. I love yellow daylilies too, although I don’t like Stella much. Martha seems to be a pretty dramatic person. I’ve seen the headstand too, and I’m also impressed. She sets her mind to something and manages it, doesn’t she?~~Dee

  7. Kathy says:

    The only purple daylily I have is more often than not a muddy color. I don’t know if it’s because it’s an older cultivar or if it’s my climate. Do you think going through cool nights would affect the color?

    Kathy, I’m making a guess because I’m no hybridizer, but I think it’s the cultivar you have. The purples and reds are closely related genetically, and they sometimes muddy each other. Believe it or not, another color that’s used to achieve the purples and reds is white. I believe it is a clarifier. Cool nights should only affect opening, not color.~~Dee

  8. Shala says:

    What a great stroll! What a great thing to do for and with your daughter. Whether she uses it for her wedding or not I’m sure this will be a great place to take photos for many years to come!

    Hi Shala, thanks for coming by. I’m glad you strolled with me.~~Dee

  9. kate says:

    I enjoyed my stroll through your garden with you. You have a lovely selection of daylilies. Last year was the first time that I planted some. This year, I’ve added a few new ones. They seem to enjoy our climate and admirably survive the winters.

    I like how the Diva is part of your garden … it is the process that matters in the end … we have so little control, often, of the final result, which is what makes life so enriching and wonderful.

    Kate, so true. Bear is more of a gardener than the Diva, but the Diva is my fiercest critic. LOL.~~Dee

  10. Mr. McGregor's Daughter says:

    I had to laugh about Martha. See, I would never pin my hopes on any such thing because I would assume that even if my daughter wanted to get married & have photos taken in the garden, it would probably be raining. It’s great to plan for the future, but I believe in enjoying the here & now too. Your here & now looks pretty good. I’ll have to try your Daylily advice next year, as it’s probably too late for my Daylilies this year. I’ve got buds on a couple already. I’ve always admired the Salters’ Daylilies. ‘Bela’ is quite a knockout too.

    MMD, I remember reading that essay and being really sad. I don’t feel that way now though. I wouldn’t expect my kids to do anything I had my heart set on. It is their nature to rebel. And, yes, the weather rebels too. Can you grow the Salters’ daylililes up where you live? It doesn’t get too cold?~~Dee

  11. Okie Sister says:

    Sounds like you understand that “Life is about the journey, not the destination.”
    Just take pictures of your daughter in that area now, in case she elopes one day.
    I too picture Heaven as a beautiful garden, with dogs, and a lake where my Dad is fishing.

    Okie Sister, great idea about the photo op. Thanks.~~Dee

  12. Pam/Digging says:

    I LOVE your red daylilies, particularly Red Suspenders.

    What a sad statement Martha made in cutting down her allee of apple trees because of disappointed expectations. What about enjoying them for what they gave, not for an unrealized photo op? I’m so glad that you see the present value of your lovely allee, even as dreams are dreamed that may or may not come true.

    Thank you, Pam. I have many more red ones. Wait until you see ‘Red Volunteer.’ It’s an oldie, but a fantastic plant and flower because of the intense color. Ah, Martha . . . I think her life has been full of unrealized expectations.~~Dee

  13. ChrisND says:

    Oh no, now I might have start collecting daylilies. An interesting post for a beginner like me and some nice photos.

    Chris, they are great fun.~~Dee

  14. CurtissAnn says:

    Honey– beautiful! Your thoughts as well as your photographs. I must come and visit!


    Please come and visit. I miss seeing you.~~Dee

  15. Element says:

    Love all the daylilies. They are slowly becoming some of my favorites.

    Element, you’re smart to start slow. That way, you won’t be culling later like me.~~Dee

  16. Lisa at Greenbow says:

    I would love to be able to stroll down this garden path with you enjoying the purple and red flowers that you and I both enjoy.
    I think you captured the one daylily’s purple in that second picture.

    Lisa, the camera did a great job on Killer. It was sunnier when I took the photo of Bela, so that’s probably why it was redder than it really is. There are lots of us out here that love the purples and reds.~~Dee

  17. Brenda Kula says:

    I think I cut most of the daylilies out (weren’t many) when I went through and cut down “the jungle” last year. But yours are truly spectacular! Love that blood red toward the top! Oh, and no place is heaven to me if I can’t bend over and absently pluck up an errant weed. Helps me think through things!

    Brenda, I wondered if God would just give us a place to play in too.~~Dee

  18. That’s a wonderful collection of daylilies. I can tell that you’re really a devoted gardener
    I’m more of an armchair gardener, but I do have a clump of daylilies, and am waiting to
    see will they actually flower this year.
    I enjoyed my stroll in your garden. Thank you!

    Hi Imelda, gardeners love people who appreciate their efforts.~~Dee

  19. walk2write says:

    Thanks for the Sunday stroll. I’m sitting inside the house right now listening to the thunder roll around outside and hoping the rain stops so we can do some grillin’! I hope your Diva sticks with her plan. She’s lucky to have a mom like you.

    Oh, thanks so much. Hope you got to grill.~~Dee

  20. Curmudgeon says:

    I had never seen a purple daylily! What fun. My uncle was a real daylily fanatic–reading your previous post reminded me of him. Thanks for the stroll.

    Curmudgeon, thanks for strolling with me.~~Dee

  21. Robbin says:

    My mother’s favorites are the Daylillies and hers have been beautiful. Each day we have to take pictures of the new ones. She has yellow ones this year that are to die for. Your garden is so lovely, and that’s an interesting thing about Martha Stewart that I’d not heard before.
    Thanks for sharing.

    Robbin, I’m glad your mother has you to share this with. I wonder which yellow variety she has. I added quite a few yellow daylilies last year to give color transition points in the garden. I tried to find the essay in Martha Stewart’s archives, but wasn’t able to. I thought it was very sad.~~Dee

  22. Aisling says:

    I’m glad you took a Sunday Stroll and shared it here today. What a pretty garden to stroll in. I love red and purple daylilies also. My daylily days are still a week or two or three away. The “ditch lilies” and Stella D’oro are beginning to set buds, but the others aren’t even that far along.

    happy gardening,

    Aisling, thanks for the idea of the Sunday stroll. Love the title. I hope you share your purple and red daylilies with us once yours start blooming.~~Dee

  23. Aiyana says:

    A very educational post about daylillies. Daylillies always have such interesting names. I wonder how they are picked. Happy GTS,

    Hi Aiyana, Happy GTS to you too. I know how they pick the names. Hybridizers pick them for all sorts of reasons. Some only name them religious names. Others put their signature in front by having the first part of the name refer to their farm, or themselves in some way. Anyway, the naming process is very secretive, and the hybridizer must send in his/her name to the registrar to make sure it isn’t already taken.~~Dee

  24. What lovely daylilies. I hadn’t realised they were so popular in the US until I discovered Blotanical. I don’t think they have such a following in the UK but I could be wrong.

    Helen, I don’t know if they’re popular in the UK, but they are in Germany. The hybridizers create new ones all the time, but some people in the US think they’re a little tacky. I don’t know why.~~Dee

  25. deb says:

    Wow, Dee those purple daylilies are awsome. Thanks for the tour.

    Deb, some folks don’t like purple. Good thing there’s a color for everyone except blue.~~Dee

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