Sunday, 16 November 2008

Green Thumb Sunday

Wednesday at the local Garden Club meeting, we had a daylily hybridizer speak. Karin Jonasson who lives on the Long Point peninsula has in her garden over 800 named varieties.
She has plants spilling over into her friends gardens as well. She is a member of the Ontario Daylily society.
She spoke on the history and development of the daylily.

How a gentleman by the name of Dr. Arlow Stout Phd. in botany in the United States started to hybridize the modern daylily from a species plant originating in Mongolia.Beginning in 1911 with a handful of species daylilies, Stout (1876-1957) pioneered such a drastic change within the genus that it still remains unparalleled. At the time that Stout began his project, the only daylily colors available were yellow and orange; one of his goals was to expand the limited range of colors. Stout discovered that the limited flower colors of the daylily species could be broken up, recombined, and even intensified to produce a diversity of new colors. . Without his trailblazing efforts, the rapid evolution of the modern daylily would not have occurred. The refinement, diversity and versatility of the modern daylily are in a large part due to Stout's revolutionary work. The monumental accomplishments in color, color combinations, flower sizes and flowering seasons made by Stout have all contributed in making the daylily the most popular garden perennial.
The Stout medal is the highest award a daylily can receive from the American Hemerocallis Society, and was established to honor Dr. Stout and his accomplishments. This medal was first awarded in 1950 to 'Hesperus.' In 1954 'Dauntles', a Stout hybrid, won the medal. Only one is selected each year by American Hemerocallis Society garden judges.
STOUT MEDAL Winner for 2008

All American Chief
This is the first year that the whole plant was assessed not just the bloom.
2 runner ups
Spacecoast Tiny Perfection
Karin is specializing in hybridizing the exotic daylily like Skinwalker and like this daylily with the twisted petals.
One of the points that was most interesting to me is that daylilies one can purchase at a grocery store are tissue bred and one can get a plant that does not perform as it should because it has more genetic material of the root or the top. Hybridize rs ,besides the exotic petals are trying for a blue daylily, a daylily that lasts more than 1 day and for height 6 foot flower scapes.
2 hours just flew by the topic was so interesting to me. One of the best treats at the end of the presentation Karin had dug up some of her daylily seedlings and brought them and some seeds for us to take home.
I picked roots of an unknown type rather than the seeds, seeds take 3 years before you see a flower.
Planted in new home, will be so interesting to see what kind of flower this daylily has, maybe it will be a new exotic .
The Ontario Daylily Society highlighted above has a very informative web site with listing of breeders to purchase good plants from. 2 I have used The Potting Shedand We're in the Hayfield now.
Attending Garden Club meetings in these cool grey winter days only fuels my imagination for my garden next spring.


Hootin' Anni said...

How fun and how exciting Rosemary! I can't wait to see what flower you will get from the daylily root!!! If you can, when it does bloom, remember to drop by and tell me to come see the photos!!

Glad you stopped by today.

Lythrum said...

I love those daylilies with twisted petals, they look so exotic. Must have been a really interesting meeting. :)

Tricia said...

Very interesting information about the history of daylily hybridization. I love daylilies so I think I would have enjoyed that meeting as well!

I hope your new daylily does well and that it has lovely blooms when it finally produces flowers for you.

kml said...

I didn't know that they could propagate from seeds. Can't wait to see what kind you have in the next growing season!

Teresa said...

The All American Chief certainly caught my eye!

Aiyana said...

Interesting post. I've always enjoyed talks by hybridizers--they are all so intense and immersed in their specialty. I attended a talk one time given by an Echinopsis hybridizer, and and was floored at his 35 year quest to get a certain group of colors! Also, I read a book about the hybridizer who developed the Oriental lilly 'Stargazer'. It was great!

Jean said...

Great information! Help your self to the cleaning poem. Jean

Rosanne said...

Sounds like it was very informative!

Shady Gardener said...

I love daylilies. Wish I had more room!! :-) That must have been a fun meeting. It certainly was informative! Thanks for sharing!!