Ask a Question forum: Daylily not dormant

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Name: Jennifer
48036 MI (Zone 6b)
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jvdubb
Feb 5, 2016 4:07 PM CST
I had a daylily I dug up and potted for replant later. I never got to it. So I put it in the garage so the pot would not freeze solid. Well the darn thing is growing!! What should I do? Water it? Put it outside since this winter has been mild? Or just leave it alone?

Thumb of 2016-02-05/jvdubb/4a8dbf

Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Annuals
Region: Canadian Keeps Horses Dog Lover Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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sooby
Feb 5, 2016 6:19 PM CST
I would check your weather forecast because where I am east of you we're supposed to get to below normal temperatures by the end of next week. You could gamble and leave it where it is but I wouldn't put it outdoors unless you're sure you won't get the cold snap. If you do put it outdoors it would be safer with the pot sunk in the ground. A mulch would also be a good addition. Another option is to bring it indoors as a houseplant if you have somewhere light enough - it might even flower indoors. If it stays where it is with low light and it doesn't get cold enough to stop growth, it will continue to "stretch" as it looks to be doing now.
Name: Jennifer
48036 MI (Zone 6b)
Cottage Gardener Houseplants Spiders! Heucheras Frogs and Toads Dahlias
Hummingbirder Sedums Winter Sowing Peonies Region: Michigan Garden Ideas: Level 2
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jvdubb
Feb 5, 2016 6:22 PM CST
Thank you Sue
Name: Judy
Louisiana (Zone 9b)
Region: Louisiana Region: Gulf Coast Hybridizer Seller of Garden Stuff
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judydu2
Feb 5, 2016 6:46 PM CST
Are you sure that's a daylily? The leaves look wrong to me.
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Annuals
Region: Canadian Keeps Horses Dog Lover Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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sooby
Feb 5, 2016 6:52 PM CST
They do look like that when emerging in the north, but those are stretched more than usual because of the (presumably) low light in the garage.
Name: Jennifer
48036 MI (Zone 6b)
Cottage Gardener Houseplants Spiders! Heucheras Frogs and Toads Dahlias
Hummingbirder Sedums Winter Sowing Peonies Region: Michigan Garden Ideas: Level 2
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jvdubb
Feb 5, 2016 6:54 PM CST
Yes, for sure it is a day lily
Name: Judy
Louisiana (Zone 9b)
Region: Louisiana Region: Gulf Coast Hybridizer Seller of Garden Stuff
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judydu2
Feb 5, 2016 7:22 PM CST
Really? I would have sworn that it was daffodils or hyacinths. Smiling
Name: Donald
Eastland county, Texas (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas Enjoys or suffers hot summers Raises cows Plant Identifier
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needrain
Feb 5, 2016 7:24 PM CST
Can you just move it inside and outside as weather permits? I do that with daylilies that I consider to be in containers too small to withstand really cold temps. Here, the really big containers stay outdoors, but when temps start getting into the mid 20s and lower I bring in those smaller. Mine get some sunlight that way. I'm still handling a lot of seedlings that I should just let freeze and be done with :).
Donald
Name: Jennifer
48036 MI (Zone 6b)
Cottage Gardener Houseplants Spiders! Heucheras Frogs and Toads Dahlias
Hummingbirder Sedums Winter Sowing Peonies Region: Michigan Garden Ideas: Level 2
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jvdubb
Feb 5, 2016 7:41 PM CST
I can move it and out of the garage!

So what would be the lowest temp tolerable to leave it out?

I cannot heel it in now as ground is frozen. I do have some old straw. I could use it to surround it. Or even top it. I wonder if that would be enough to just leave it out.

I'm assuming that even if the new growth gets frosted new growth will come up and be ok. Day lilies seem so tough!
Name: Donald
Eastland county, Texas (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas Enjoys or suffers hot summers Raises cows Plant Identifier
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needrain
Feb 5, 2016 8:00 PM CST
Well, I think how cold depends on the size of the container and the material of the container. They seem to be able to take temps down to about 24-25F overnight quite readily even in the smaller containers. My day temps tend to rise above freezing during the daylight hours and I probably wouldn't trust leaving a small container out if the duration of the freeze were longer than overnight. Larger pots and pots that are naturally thicker take more cold than a 6" plastic pot, e.g., but if it were going to be a deep freeze for several days I wouldn't chance it personally. Since I don't risk it, I'm not sure just how cold they might handle and still return. This winter has been pretty mild, so I have some stacked up against a south facing rock wall that I haven't brought inside at all. My weather here in Texas isn't going to be comparable to yours in Michigan, but sometimes my location is subject to a cold spell down into the teens and sometimes single digits and staying below freezing for several days. Most things get moved into the garage for those spells.
Donald
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Annuals
Region: Canadian Keeps Horses Dog Lover Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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sooby
Feb 5, 2016 8:38 PM CST
I'm not sure how close to Jennifer this is, but the forecast for a week from now for Clinton, Michigan, is 21F for the high and 9F for the low. That's warmer than here where the high for that day is predicted to be 9F and the low -6F but still fairly cold. I've had a couple of daylilies survive down to 19F in pots by the house but I didn't risk lower than that and they'd been outside 24/7 up to that point. If a plant is not acclimated to significant cold it won't tolerate as much freezing as it would if it had been experiencing cold temperatures for a while and had time to adjust. (For example a daylily that can tolerate deep freezer level temperatures outside in winter, having adjusted during fall, will not survive being suddenly put in a deep freezer in July). I'm not sure how much cold acclimation a daylily in the garage would have developed, especially since it is growing, and it is, as Donald said, more vulnerable in a pot than in the ground.
[Last edited by sooby - Feb 5, 2016 8:40 PM (+)]
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Name: Daisy
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
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DaisyI
Feb 5, 2016 9:18 PM CST
Whatever else you do, water it.
Name: Donald
Eastland county, Texas (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas Enjoys or suffers hot summers Raises cows Plant Identifier
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needrain
Feb 5, 2016 10:01 PM CST
I think Daisy is correct on giving it water. If it's not freezing, daylilies get water. Less in the winter, but more or less on a regular basis. I worry about the clay pots having too much water and cracking or flaking if the soil has too much moisture, but I worry more about the daylilies not having enough. A lot of my container plants almost get no water during the winter (many could use and would appreciate more, I'm sure) but daylilies don't get shorted.
Donald
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Annuals
Region: Canadian Keeps Horses Dog Lover Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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sooby
Feb 6, 2016 9:14 AM CST
I found a study that listed Hemerocallis 'Joan Senior' as significantly damaged when the growing medium went down to 15F. The link is here (around 200 pages, an MSc thesis:

https://vtechworks.lib.vt.edu/bitstream/handle/10919/35746/H...
Name: Jennifer
48036 MI (Zone 6b)
Cottage Gardener Houseplants Spiders! Heucheras Frogs and Toads Dahlias
Hummingbirder Sedums Winter Sowing Peonies Region: Michigan Garden Ideas: Level 2
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jvdubb
Feb 6, 2016 9:34 AM CST
Well it is nice out today. I watered it and set it out in by sheltered southwest facing wall. I'll just move it into the garage at night if its going to go below 30. I should only have to shuttle it back and forth for a few more weeks

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