Daylily – Evergreen

Q: I saw an “evergreen” daylily offered in a garden catalog. They say it will not flower year-round but plants will keep their leaves in winter. Is there really such a plant and where can I purchase them locally?

A: I think “evergreen” is a misnomer under Georgia growing conditions. Daylilies are divided into “dormant” , “semi-evergreen” and “evergreen” classes, depending upon how they respond to cold weather. “Dormant” daylily greenery disappears in winter. “Evergreen” daylilies attempt to send up leaves whenever they can, even if cold weather may strike it down in a few days. The cold-damaged foliage turns mushy and may lead to rot in the plant crown. Since there are always some brown leaves present in winter, “semi-evergreen” and “evergreen” daylilies look untidy in cold weather.

If you regularly clean out the damaged leaves after they freeze you may have success with evergreen daylilies. The best advice on daylily culture is from local experts. The Georgia Daylily Society has their annual show and sale on June 14, 2003 at North DeKalb Mall.

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