MAR­TYN COX’S CITY GAR­DEN

Di­vid­ing day lilies, tidy­ing peren­ni­als, au­tumn plans

Amateur Gardening - - This Week In Gardening -

ONE of the stars of my gar­den is the day lily – heme­ro­cal­lis. I’ve got three dif­fer­ent va­ri­eties that pro­vide a non-stop dis­play for about seven weeks in sum­mer. The first yel­low bloom opens in mid-June and plants are still go­ing strong at the be­gin­ning of Au­gust.

They re­ally are good value and re­quire very lit­tle care, apart from reg­u­lar dead­head­ing, to en­sure they con­tinue to pump out fresh blooms. So I’ve de­cided to find space for other va­ri­eties and, as luck would have it, I al­ready have some in con­tain­ers that I’ve been nur­tur­ing for a few years. Hav­ing been pot­ted up sev­eral times and given plenty to eat and drink dur­ing the grow­ing sea­son they’ve formed quite size­able clumps, per­fect for split­ting into sev­eral smaller pieces.

It’s pos­si­ble to plant the sec­tions di­rectly into the ground but I find plants pick up more read­ily if set in pots. Another good rea­son for start­ing di­vi­sions off in pots is that it’s eas­ier to con­trol slugs and snails, who love to feast on young shoots in late win­ter. Once the plants are es­tab­lished they are less vul­ner­a­ble to the pests, so can go into the ground in early spring with a few slug pel­lets to pro­tect them. Now is also a good time for di­vid­ing large clumps that have be­come shy to flower in the ground. To re­ju­ve­nate lift with a fork and slice through the mass of con­gested roots with a spade. It helps to pre­pare the ground prior to plant­ing so sec­tions can be planted im­me­di­ately, rather than al­low roots to dry out.

Heme­ro­cal­lis di­vi­sions do best when first pot­ted into con­tain­ers

Alamy

Yel­low heme­ro­cal­lis

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