Gardening Help FAQs

Here are answers to some of the most common questions we receive about garden plants. You will find concise information on general gardening techniques as well as plant selection and care. For detailed information on specific plant pests and problems refer to our Common Garden Pests and Problems page.

Do you have additional gardening questions? Please contact us. Here's how.

Horticulture Questions and Answers

How do I grow daylilies?

Even though each daylily flower lasts only a day as the name suggests, daylilies are reliable perennials which can enjoy a long season of bloom in St. Louis. Many varieties bloom only once each year for about 3 to 4 weeks but other cultivars are available which are repeat bloomers. 'Stella d'Oro' with its golden orange flowers and 'Happy Returns' with its clear yellow flowers are two such rebloomers. Because there are so many cultivars which do well in St. Louis, selection is often based on plant size and flower color and form. Many plants can be purchased in bloom or view the extensive collection at the Garden to make your shopping list. It will be a long one I'm sure. By selecting cultivars which bloom at different times you can have blooming plants from May through late September. Colors range from near white through shades of yellow and orange to pink and near red.

Daylilies are not demanding perennials and will grow well in a variety of soils and locations. They flower best in full sun but will tolerate part shade. They like a well drained soil with ample organic matter worked in. Although they are somewhat drought tolerant lower leaves will yellow and flowering will be reduced if they are kept too dry. For best bloom and appearance, water regularly from spring to fall. Plants should be spaced 18-24 inches apart and mulched well. Clumps can grow for decades before they need dividing but if flowering is reduced or clumps become too large, dig and divide the clumps in spring or fall. Two spading forks used back to back are helpful in prying the clumps apart. Save the young outer divisions and discard the tough old center. Reset the plants with the crown of the plant at the same height it was originally and spread the roots so they fan out in the new hole. Water well. Few insects and diseases bother daylilies. Usually the only regular care they need is to groom the plants by removing the spent flowers as they die and removing the dead foliage in spring as new growth begins.