Daylilies forum: Daylilies: End of season clean up question. Deadheading question.

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Name: Sue Petruske
Wisconsin (Zone 5a)
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petruske
Jul 27, 2016 7:43 PM CST
The year is going quickly. With the recent rains and hot weather the daylilies are going fast. Some need cleaning up already. And that is what this "thread" is about. When, how, and what are the benefits?

I have always cut the scapes off as soon as the blooms are done. I figured that getting it off of there will result in less green for the plant to keep up. Therefore, making a stronger plant.
Recently I read (somewhere) that the scapes should be left on until they turn brown because when they are green, they are actually still feeding the plant.
ANYONE HAVE DIFINATIVE INFORMATION ON THAT?

I also trim leaves to about 6" very late in the growing season when I know the growing season is at it's end. Mainly because I like the tidiness of it and to perhaps avoid any bug issues in the spring.

Another question, this one regarding deadheading. I always deadhead early in the morning so the plant looks better throughout the day. It occurred to me that maybe during hot, hot weather it MAY be better to leave the spent bloom on the plant to allow the moisture (which is often a lot) to return to the scape. Does that indeed happen? Or once the bloom is spent...is that it...nothing benificial can return to the scape?
ANYONE HAVE DIFINATIVE INFORMATION ON THAT?
Name: Skipper
Hamilton, Ohio (Zone 6a)
Daylilies Dog Lover Composter Region: Ohio Spiders!
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cottelpg
Jul 27, 2016 7:50 PM CST
This is a great question. I also trim ratty looking foliage to about six inches after blooming season. My daylilies normally respond by vigorous healthy growth going into the fall. I would be interested in opinions of others as well.
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
Jul 27, 2016 8:13 PM CST
I'm not sure what you'd consider definitive? Yes green stems can photosynthesize so contribute some food to the plant. How much they contribute in daylilies specifically I don't know and it may well not have been studied.

Yes cutting back the foliage could have a negative effect depending how much you cut and possibly when. Basically you are reducing the area of leaf that can make food. The plant's response is to grow new leaves to get back into food manufacturing, but to do that it has to use the food it had stored before you cut it. This may not cause much of a problem except in theory with recently planted daylilies or those that are borderline hardy in your zone. We're growing them for esthetic value so sometimes we do things that are better for us than the plant Hilarious! It may be that cutting back could reduce flowering the next year but whether it does is something one could test oneself. By newly planted I don't mean so recently that they are still short from transplant cutting back. Cutting back is usually necessary to reduce transpiration when transplanting, which is potentially more serious than temporarily reducing photosynthesis.

Yes nutrients are recycled back to the plant from dying daylily flowers. This has been studied in scientific research. I can give you the references but not until tomorrow.
Name: Sue Petruske
Wisconsin (Zone 5a)
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petruske
Jul 27, 2016 11:19 PM CST
Thank you sooby. I look forward to the references.
Name: Sabrina
Italy, Brescia (Zone 8b)
Love daylilies and making candles!
Daylilies Cat Lover Region: Europe Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Level 1
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cybersix
Jul 28, 2016 2:20 AM CST
I didn't trim any leaves in the past winter, but I was wondering if trimming can help getting rid of some plant problem (spring sickness, pests).
I take off brown scapes only when pulling they come off easily, and I never deadhead.
Sabrina, North Italy
My blog: http://hemerocallisblog.com
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
Jul 28, 2016 2:23 AM CST
petruske said:Thank you sooby. I look forward to the references.


This is one:
http://www.plantphysiol.org/content/109/2/557.full.pdf
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
Jul 28, 2016 2:29 AM CST
cybersix said:I didn't trim any leaves in the past winter, but I was wondering if trimming can help getting rid of some plant problem (spring sickness, pests).
I take off brown scapes only when pulling they come off easily, and I never deadhead.


Possibly to some extent although probably not for spring sickness based on informal experiments - would need to do some proper testing to see if there was a reduction. It dosn't stop it all together anyway.

Name: Sabrina
Italy, Brescia (Zone 8b)
Love daylilies and making candles!
Daylilies Cat Lover Region: Europe Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Level 1
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cybersix
Jul 28, 2016 2:55 AM CST
Thanks Sue. I'll decide later at the end of the season. I left all the foliage to check if the plants would go dormant or not, this year I could cut it and see what difference makes in the next season.
Sabrina, North Italy
My blog: http://hemerocallisblog.com
Name: Sue Petruske
Wisconsin (Zone 5a)
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petruske
Jul 28, 2016 8:26 AM CST
Thanks sooby for that link. A little hard to read through but it appears that there is benefit to leaving the spent bloom on.

Not to turn this thread into a spring sickness thread...BUT...I sure wish "the powers that be" could come to a conclusion of what the causes are and what to do about it.

I have spring sickness occur in my gardens. This year seemed to be more than usual and I was concerned that it would be a poor bloom year. Every year it worries me and every year they all grow out of it and amaze me. The plants always start out great, then spring sickness sets in, and in the end all turns out okay.
Name: Sabrina
Italy, Brescia (Zone 8b)
Love daylilies and making candles!
Daylilies Cat Lover Region: Europe Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Level 1
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cybersix
Jul 28, 2016 8:32 AM CST
I had spring sickness for the first time, not on all DLs. On four, three of which turned out beautiful, one it's smaller than before and blooms were not many.
I also had daylily gall midge, spider mites.. leaves are not really good looking that's why I was planning to trim them at the end of season.
Sabrina, North Italy
My blog: http://hemerocallisblog.com
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
Jul 28, 2016 8:45 AM CST
Spring sickness has been around since the 1950s and possibly at least the 1940s and still we don't know exactly what causes it although there are suspects. It's very hard to study because you never know which fans or plants will get it in a given year, plus you have to wait a year between instances so testing ideas is slow going. Too often it is put down to weather conditions after the shoots have emerged but one thing we do now know is that it starts before the shoots first emerge in spring.
Name: Sabrina
Italy, Brescia (Zone 8b)
Love daylilies and making candles!
Daylilies Cat Lover Region: Europe Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
cybersix
Jul 28, 2016 8:50 AM CST
It's like having a russian roulette in the garden!
Sabrina, North Italy
My blog: http://hemerocallisblog.com
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
Image
sooby
Jul 28, 2016 9:03 AM CST
Sure is Hilarious!

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