Daylilies forum: ATP Series: The Daylilies of Clayton Burkey

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Name: Char
Vermont (Zone 4b)
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Char
Jul 8, 2013 4:48 AM CST

Moderator

From Woodhenge Gardens in Virginia we are traveling north to Hickory Hill Gardens in Loretto, Pennsylvania and the daylilies from the hybridizing program of Clayton Burkey.

In the mid 1970’s when the focus was turning toward hybridizing the rounder, larger tetraploids Clayton was searching for the narrowest of diploids, the spiders. His fascination for spider forms was encouraged by Mrs. Lola Branham, a mentor and friend. He began hybridizing the narrow forms long before the classifications of spider and unusual form were recognized by the AHS. While working to make the tepal segments (sepals and petals) narrow and spidery was a challenge, other interesting shapes emerged with slightly wider segments than desired in the spider form. These were often referred to as exotics and later as spider variants before the official recognition of unusual form. (To learn more about the history of the spiders and unusual forms recommended reading is the AHS publication “Caught in the Web” Spiders & UFs). Clayton’s cultivars are known for their beauty, wonderful plant habits and also for their importance in hybridizing by others seeking to work with spider and unusual forms.

First registrations from Hickory Hill were in 1987, ‘August Eighty-Three’, ‘Godzilla’, ‘Cheerful Thought’, ‘Kirsten My Love’, ‘My Valentine’s Secret’, ‘Starman’s Journey’ and “Sultan’s Expression’. The first cultivar, and perhaps the most important from a hybridizer’s view, to receive an award was ‘Lola Branham’ (1991) with an Honorable Mention (HM) in 1999 and the Lambert/Webster Award for best unusual form in 2003.

‘Lola Branham’ (Burkey 1991)



Considered one of the most beautiful daylilies by collectors and hybridizers, ‘Lola Branham’ has been used extensively in hybridizing. Currently 80 registered cultivars have ‘Lola Branham’ as a parent. The most famous of these is ‘North Wind Dancer’ with a Lambert/Webster Award in 2007 and the recipient of the 2011 Stout Medal. A few other HM winners from Clayton include ‘Kirsten’s Corsage’(1996) in 2002 and ‘Android’(1996) in 2003. ‘Android’ has also been a successful parent with three registrations from hybridizer Don Herr, one unusual form, ‘Jelly Dancer’ (Herr 2010), and two spiders, ‘Dancing in the Sunlight’ (Herr 2006) and a 2009 HM winner ‘Summer Fireworks’ (Herr 2005). Crossing 2002 HM winner ‘Starman’s Fantasy (1991) with ‘Starman’s Delight (2000) gave Clayton three introductions ‘Starman’s Dream’ (2000), ‘Mystical Enchantress’ (2002) and ‘Kirsten Madeline Burkey’ (2000)a 10” crimson spider recognized by garden judges with a 2005 HM Award. Another very successful cultivar from Clayton is ‘Starman’s Quest’ (1989). Awards presented to ‘Starman’s Quest include the HM in 2001, an Award of Merit in 2004 and the R. W. Munson Jr. Award in 2011 for best patterned cultivar. ‘Starman’s Quest’ has proved itself as a hybridizing plant as well. Hybridizers including Tom Polston with a 2011 HM for ‘Bob Faulkner’ (Polston 2006), Michael Miller with several very nice introductions and Jamie Gossard with a 2008 HM for ‘Smoke Scream’, have all used ‘Starman’s Quest’ to further their breeding lines. Jamie Gossard converted the diploid ‘Starman’s Quest’ to tetraploid and produced the tetraploids ‘Upgrade’ (Gossard, J (2007), ‘Ninja Storm’ (Gossard, J 2005) and ‘Purple Cheetah (Gossard, J 2006) a 2010 HM winner.

In 2011 Clayton Burkey was recognized for his outstanding work and contributions in hybridizing with the AHS Bertrand Farr Silver Medal.

To see more of Clayton’s introductions (he also raises beautiful canary’s!) visit his website
http://pidsweb.org/ClaytonBurkey/

‘Android’ (Burkey 1996)



‘Kirsten Madeline Burkey’ (Burkey 2000)



‘Starmans’ Quest’ (Burkey 1989)


Name: Theresa Maris
Bowling Green,KY (Zone 6b)
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tgarden711
Jul 8, 2013 6:03 AM CST
The spiders are just lovely, the huge blooms really stand out and they sometimes look as if a curling iron was taken to the petals.
Name: Juli
(Zone 5b)
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daylily
Jul 8, 2013 9:53 AM CST
He really has some beautiful things! Thanks, Char!
Name: Liz Quinn
Huntersville,NC (Zone 7a)
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Emquinn
Jul 8, 2013 6:03 PM CST
Starmans' Quest was added to my garden last fall. So beautiful.
Liz
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Name: Jan
Hustisford, WI
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philljm
Jul 9, 2013 3:40 PM CST
Wonderful article
Name: Betty
MN zone 4
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daylilydreams
Jul 9, 2013 4:01 PM CST
Two of his daylilies grow here they are Starman's Fantasy


and Starman's Quest
If you want to be happy for a lifetime plant a garden!
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Betty MN Zone4 AHS member

[Last edited by daylilydreams - Jul 9, 2013 4:07 PM (+)]
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Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
Melvindale, Mi (Zone 5b)
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Hemlady
Jul 9, 2013 5:51 PM CST
Well I guess I have the same two that are the most popular.

LOLA BRANHAMThumb of 2013-07-09/Hemlady/9908e2


STARMAN'S QUEST
Thumb of 2013-07-09/Hemlady/e7e986
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Name: Julie
Roanoke, VA (Zone 7a)
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floota
Jul 9, 2013 6:30 PM CST
Here are a few of Clayton's.
ANDROID and BIRDWING BUTTERFLY.
Thumb of 2013-07-10/floota/6dc6da Thumb of 2013-07-10/floota/a8b2e1
HELGA BJORNERUD BURKEY ( named after Clayton's mother) and KIRSTEN MADELINE BURKEY (named after his daughter)
Thumb of 2013-07-10/floota/939ad5 Thumb of 2013-07-10/floota/35f32c
The lovely LOLA ( BRANHAM) named after a friend of Clayton's from Richmond, VA is worthy of at least two pictures. It is a ML bloomer and just began blooming here.
Thumb of 2013-07-10/floota/6b6467 Thumb of 2013-07-10/floota/cb286f
STARMAN'S QUEST :
Thumb of 2013-07-10/floota/cac8e1 Thumb of 2013-07-10/floota/91d32a

That's all I can think of at the moment!
Name: Vickie
Elberfeld, Indiana, USA (Zone 6b)
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blue23rose
Jul 10, 2013 5:02 AM CST
Very beautiful!
Vickie
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Name: Vivian
Southeastern Michigan (Zone 6b)
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ViviansTreasures
Jul 14, 2013 8:47 AM CST
Oh... I got to get me some of those!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Lovey dubby
Beautiful
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dormantsrule
Jul 14, 2013 5:23 PM CST
Canticle of Mary.

Thumb of 2013-07-14/dormantsrule/d0eb2a
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Name: John Hajdu Heyer
Whitewater Wisconsin -- Burr O (Zone 5a)
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BurrOakJohn
Aug 9, 2013 8:32 PM CST
I have know Clayton Burkey for more that a half century, since I was 14 years old -- he taught me General Science that year. He inspired my interest in hybridizing. I have many of Clayton's cultivars. Two of them that are not mentioned in this forum (unless I have missed something) are "Sophia's Magic" and "Kirsten's Corsage." Both are exceptional performers in my garden. Kirsten's Corsage has received an AHS award, but Sophia's Magic seems to be under the radar. It curls and twists in a variety of graceful ways. It is among my very favorites -- a real asset in the front of the garden. Here it is with his famous "Starman's Quest" in the background. Note how the petal of the one on the left curls clockwise around a bud, while the one on the right curls counterclockwise around a bud.

Thumb of 2013-08-10/BurrOakJohn/7d3545

Kirsten's Corsage also gives a wonderful show, improving each year. These photos are of it with the late-afternoon sun coming through it's petals from behind.

Thumb of 2013-08-10/BurrOakJohn/f4ceca
Thumb of 2013-08-10/BurrOakJohn/f04166

Name: Juli
(Zone 5b)
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daylily
Aug 10, 2013 12:01 AM CST
John, how interesting to have a hybridizer as a science teacher! Lovely photos too!

Welcome!
[Last edited by daylily - Aug 10, 2013 6:58 AM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #463544 (13)
Name: Cynthia (Cindy)
Melvindale, Mi (Zone 5b)
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Hemlady
Aug 10, 2013 5:58 AM CST
Welcome! Welcome!
Lighthouse Gardens

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