Hi, my name's Mary, and I'm a Hemeroholic. I'm not sure how it happened, and I certainly never intended it, but I have to admit: I love Daylilies. Most of my life, I avoided Daylilies like the plague. My mother warned me about them, and taught me to scorn the ugly, orange-with-black-spots "Tiger Lily" that grew between our back yard and our neighbor's. I didn't know that her despised "Tiger Lily" was not a Daylily. I simply accepted Mom's bias, and lived my life with no lilies of any kind in my plantings.
But in 2010, I was looking for some kind of summer-flowering, easy-growing, indestructible perennial to grace bare spots in my yard. Since All Things Plants didn't exist yet, I turned to my other Internet source of all knowledge, a message board for Greyhound owners. Gardeners there assured me that Hemerocallis was virtually indestructible, *and* pretty, so I headed to my local big box store to see what I could find.
What I found was a half-off sale on Daylilies, so I brought some home with me, stuck them in holes I dug in my red GA clay with absolutely no soil amendments, and watched them thrive. It seemed my friends were correct when they said Daylilies were easy to grow and difficult to kill. And I was happy. I had 6-8 pretty plants bordering my driveway bed.
"It was enough," I told myself. "This is sufficient."
Until one night the next month, when I met someone in the parking lot of my favorite big box store, who asked me if I was a gardener, and did I want free Daylilies, just for the labor of helping her divide them. So I went to her house, in 100F degree heat, and helped this woman and her husband thin out their daylilies. It was WAY too hot to dig proper holes for them back at my house, so I just shoved my shovel into that red GA clay, wiggled it back and forth until I had a wedge-shaped opening I could push the roots into, and then tamped the dirt back in place with my feet. And these hardy Hemerocallis plants dug their roots into that clay, and grew and thrived, and they bloom for me every year, no matter how I neglect them. They're virtually indestructible, and easy to grow, just as my friends promised. But I had two dozen or more scattered around my yard now. It was enough. Even if I didn't know the names of the different cultivars I had, I knew that I had all the Daylilies I would ever need.
"I'll stop now," I told myself. "This is sufficient."
And it was, until summer 2011, when I saw Daylilies on *clearance* in my big box store. CLEARANCE plants! BARGAINS! Pennies on the dollar, for easy to grow, almost indestructible plants! I'm still not sure how it happened, but when I got home that night, I unloaded another half-dozen Daylilies from my car. "Enough is enough!" I told myself firmly. "No one needs three dozen or more different Daylilies in their yard. What will the neighbors think?"
This time, the moratorium on buying Daylilies only lasted about six months. In July 2011, I joined All Things Plants. In December, I finally wandered into the Daylily forum , and sealed my fate as a Hemeroholic. Before joining the Daylily Forum, I was blissfully ignorant and innocent, totally unaware of such things as the Lily Auction, the American Hemerocallis Society (AHS), local Daylily Societies, AHS Display Gardens , and local hybridizers. All of the above entities are more than willing to share their love of the 72,000 cultivars of what used to be a common orange or yellow flower. ATP even has a Daylily Database where other Hemeroholics can upload photos. And that was my downfall.
Each time a new Daylily photo appeared, I had to click through and marvel at its beauty. Maybe only 1% of the ones I looked at wound up on my "I want these" spreadsheet, but that list quickly soared past 100 Daylilies.