The Q&A Archives: Daylillies

Question: I purchased a Stella Daylilly three years ago. Each summer it blooms a couple of times and then shoots out long stems with pods on the end. This year I left the pods alone and then harvested them just the other day. They have seeds in them. Question 1, why is my day lilly going to seed? And will the seeds grow?

Answer: All daylily flowers, if they are pollinated, are capable of producing viable seeds. Gardeners usually cut the spent flowers from their daylilies before they produce seeds because seed production takes lots of energy from the plant and while they're busy forming seeds, they won't be forming additional flowers. If you deadhead the spent flowers, daylilies will often send up new flower stems. Now that you have your seeds, you can plant them. Fill a gallon zip lock bag with 2 inches of barely damp vermiculite. Place the seeds in the bag. Zip the bag shut and shake to distribute the seed. Place in indirect sunlight or indoors under artificial light (I use fluorescent shop lights).

Check the bag occasionally. Green leaves will begin growing in 2-3 weeks. At that time, open the bag and set it upright. I turn the open top down on itself to encourage good air circulation. The plants will grow upward toward the light. Keep the vermiculite moist. When most of the leaves are 4 inches tall, it is time to carefully transplant the seedlings to their own pots.

Good luck with your project!

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