Daylilies forum: Daylily Problems Zone 8

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Prattville, AL
royboy210
May 10, 2019 5:34 PM CST
Last year and this year I have had daylily problems with buds turning brown and falling off or turning yellow and not developing fully. I have some leaf streak but do not think that is the problem. In March the leaves were green and lush. Since then some plants look like they are shrinking in size and the scapes are just an inch or two form the ground. I have a Happy Halloween that has blooms only 4 inches form the ground and have another daylily 18 inches away that is three feet high with perfect blooms and buds. I used Milogranite in March and then applied some alfalfa pellets in April. I am in Zone 8 near Montgomery, AL and we had a warm spell in February followed by cold weather until last month. I have very rich soil but we have had numerous storms with excessive rain. This 20 ft. X 30 ft. bed is located where a weeping willow tree was some 15 years ago. I have had daylilies here for at least 10 years and in 2017 had the best and most blooms ever. Can anyone offer any advice as to what has may have happened and what I need to do ? Any advice?recommendations will be welcomed.
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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
May 10, 2019 7:41 PM CST
And there it is right there: "we had a warm spell in February followed by cold weather until last month."

Confused plants produce confused flowers. If you lived where it was colder, you would worry about warm/cold spells because your daffodil and tulip flowers would be stemless. Its a weather thing. They will be fine when (if) the weather ever gets back to "normal"

Even though the daylily right next to the "runt" is fine, the flowers developed at different times. Later flowers on the short stemmed plant should develop at the usual height.

Unless you have a personal relationship with the weather gods, there's not much you can do. Smiling
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Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
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sooby
May 11, 2019 5:16 AM CST
Do you recall the cause of the willow's demise and have you had any other woody plants die in the vicinity recently? Have you dug any of the affected plants up to look at the roots?

Sometimes it happens that extra early scapes bloom low and HH is registered as M, is this when you would normally expect it to flower? That would not explain the dwindling foliage though or the drying buds.

There is some mottling on the leaves but the picture isn't clear enough to see if that is thrips damage, something else, or a camera effect. If there actually is something there, can you post a close-up? The bud (and perhaps scape) appear to have damage that is typically attributed to thrips.

I notice you also have daylily leafminer but it shouldn't be causing that problem.
[Last edited by sooby - May 11, 2019 5:55 AM (+)]
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Name: Arlene
Florida's east coast (Zone 9a)
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florange
May 11, 2019 5:36 AM CST
The same low-blooming problems have happened this spring down here in Florida. Both in my garden and in a professional grower's garden some distance away. I think it came from cool earlier spring weather followed immediately by hot weather. My mid-season daylilies are sending up scapes right now, and their current scapes are at the normal height.

Sounds screwy but it seems that the daylilies are outgrowing the problem.
Athens, Ohio (Zone 6a)
mantisOH
May 11, 2019 8:26 PM CST
Last year we had the fourth-coldest April on record followed by the hottest May on record. There were many stunted scapes in the garden, produced (as suggested by others) by the aberrant spring weather. North of here, however, there were fewer effects because their plants were less developed in the cold April.

Yes, 2017 here was also a wonderful year. Last year was crummy, as we had a tropical heat wave during peak in addition to all the scape problems. I personally think that a lot of milorganite in the spring encourages leaf streak. It seems to me that if your soil is very rich, you need only fertilize young plants. Some cultivars are more susceptible to stunted scapes too. Happy Halloween is tender here.
[Last edited by mantisOH - May 12, 2019 6:12 AM (+)]
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Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
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Seedfork
May 11, 2019 8:48 PM CST
Not sure about milorganite in the spring producing leaf streak.
https://www.daylilies.org/ahs_...
It is possible I suppose that milorganite might aid somehow in the spread, but I have not noticed it here. I seem to have more than my share of it with or without milorganite in the spring. It might cause faster growth of the foliage and maybe more tender foliage, and make it more susceptible to disease? I suppose any fertilizer might cause that.
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
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sooby
May 12, 2019 4:52 AM CST
Larry is correct, leaf streak is caused by a fungus, and I too was wondering why fertilize an already "rich" soil, as MantisOH noted. Perhaps a soil test is in order to make sure nothing is excessive. Nutrient levels can affect various diseases however.

Milorganite doesn't release its nitrogen until the soil temperature is over 55F in any case, although maybe it would be that warm in March in Alabama?

However, this problem started last year, so was the weather pattern the same last year?

Also the buds have lesions, are drying up and aborting, as well as the scapes being short.
Name: Sharon Rose
Grapevine, TX (Zone 8a)
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Altheabyanothername
May 12, 2019 11:40 AM CST
@sooby

I think you are right that Thrips are involved amongst other things. It seems that when one insect or disease picks on a daylily...more do. Besides leaf streak...earwigs make leaves look like that, too. I find here in the warmer climates, usually you would have more than one thing going on. Root knot nematodes are more prevalent in the south...the longer a plant stays in place...the more likely they are to occur.

When not in bloom or the heat of summer, it would not hurt to dig the plant up. Wash it off. Check and trim the roots. Get your hands in there and check above and below the crown. Cut the fans as if shipping. I peel quite a few leaves off...looking at what insects are living in there. Then soak in some water with a little hydrogen peroxide. Recheck the plant for insects...let dry...replant with surrounding soil refreshed with compost or manure. Maybe all that will yield some extra clues. Then see what it does next year.

Besides the regular leaf miner I have been disturbed to find that there may be another leaf mining pest...you can see the thin leaf miner which has been the normal pest for years. Now I am seeing "Super " leafmining on the daylilies...
Thumb of 2019-05-12/Altheabyanothername/7501e5
Some leaves have both patterns but most have either the old type patterns or the new type which is usually more towards the center of the leaf, much straighter, and almost 6 times wider. I have seen some odd silver shades in the center of leaves...that has me paranoid that Gall Midge has made its way over here. The leaves with Super leaf mining marks have been newer leaves...I would have to really rip a daylily apart to try to find something.

So besides thrips in the second picture...between the out of focus flower and dried blooms is there any possibilty of Gall Midge, also?

Roy ...I hope your daylilies recover and....
May everyone have a great gardening season!

One to take to heart....1 John 4
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
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sooby
May 12, 2019 12:27 PM CST
There is only one known daylily leafminer (Ophomyia kwansonis) which has only been a pest in North America for the past ten years or so:

https://daylilies.org/daylily-...

If you think you have something other than this, Sharon Rose, it would be a good idea to let your local extension office/inspector have a look at it because it would be something not previously reported. You should not need to "rip a daylily apart", just open up a mine.

The daylily gall midge only affects buds and not leaves. If that was the problem there would be swollen watery buds with maggots as well. It has not been reported from Alabama thus far:

https://daylilies.org/daylily-...

There are brown marks on the outside of the bud in the problem picture that are not unusual and are usually attributed to thrips, like this:

Thumb of 2019-05-12/sooby/e55cb4
[Last edited by sooby - May 12, 2019 12:51 PM (+)]
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Name: Sharon Rose
Grapevine, TX (Zone 8a)
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Altheabyanothername
May 12, 2019 1:24 PM CST
Thank You! Sue...it is good to know that about Gall Midge. I see the thrip damage on Roy's daylilies. Thumbs up
Also...that was very good information that you passed on about Milorganite and temperatures. Never heard that before...but it makes sense.

Many times the normal leaf miner is on the oldest leaf. That makes it easy to tear the leaf off all the way down by the crown. I usually find the little yellow miner. I have not been able to find the miner in a mine in the upper part of the leaf. Maybe at that stage it is still too small for my eyes.

The super mines have been on newer leaves that I can not tear off near the bottom of the plant. I am tearing and it never fails to rip in the middle of the mine. The end of the mine is way down in the fan. I have been unable to get that part out. Seeing as daylilies have only one type of miner...I am going to spend extra effort trying to get at the end of one of the super mines and verify that it looks the same.

May your day be spectacular!
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Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
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Seedfork
May 12, 2019 2:16 PM CST
Found these this morning, can't tell they have done any damage, but then I think they were just there for a short while. I am thinking all the rain made them look for a higher drier place. I think they are some type of oak "worm"?
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Leaf miner damage, rust, leaf streak and thrips , what was that they said about daylilies being pest free and disease resistant?

Name: Arlene
Florida's east coast (Zone 9a)
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florange
May 12, 2019 2:24 PM CST
Larry, those worms look similar to the worms that get on my spring tomatoes--army worms. I know nothing about oak worms, but army worms are voracious and do lots of damage!
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
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sooby
May 12, 2019 2:25 PM CST
They're millipedes, Larry:

https://bugguide.net/node/view...
Name: Elena
NYC (Zone 7a)
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bxncbx
May 12, 2019 2:29 PM CST
Larry I've seen those bugs on my daylily leaves before but not often & I could never see any damage. I think the were eating the mushy, rotting leaves.

I had a ton of bud drop last year with all the rain we got. I'm thinking that may be the culprit. Lots of rain with little sun to dry the water being held in the leaves caused scapes to abort & buds to drop. I would have thought it wouldn't be an issue someplace warmer but if the weather stayed unusually cold that could be it.

Unfortunately this year is looking to be a repeat. It's pouring right now & will continue until Tuesday. The daylilies are all green & lush but I'm guessing bloom season will be a disappointment this year. Sad
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
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Seedfork
May 12, 2019 2:41 PM CST
I thought army worms are softer and greener, these are hard and brown. But, yes I think Alabama is prime territory for army worms in the lawns. Do they have two stages or three stages?
Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
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sooby
May 12, 2019 2:44 PM CST
Seedfork said:I thought army worms are softer and greener, these are hard and brown. But, yes I think Alabama is prime territory for army worms in the lawns. Do they have two stages or three stages?


They're not armyworms, they have two pairs of legs for each body segment which is why I said millipedes above. A caterpillar (armyworm) doesn't have anywhere near that many legs.
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Composter Daylilies Garden Photography Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier
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Seedfork
May 12, 2019 2:54 PM CST
Thanks sooby,
https://hgic.clemson.edu/facts...
I may end up with millions of them, I have created a haven for them, I have tons of oak leaves, grass clippings and pine straw hauled into the garden, and piled up decaying away for later use! So good to know they are helping me to reach my goal, wonder if they make decent fish bait? I do hope they don't start invading the house, I think I will start spraying around the window and door seals.
[Last edited by Seedfork - May 12, 2019 6:36 PM (+)]
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Name: Diana
Lincoln, NE (Zone 5b)
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ShakespearesGarden
May 12, 2019 6:29 PM CST
Larry, my mom had countless millipedes one year after a particularly rainy season. They did get into the house. The basement was constantly covered in them for about a month. We'd sweep them out and the next day, there'd be more.
Bravery is not being unafraid. Bravery is being afraid and living life anyways.
Name: Vickie
Elberfeld, Indiana, USA (Zone 6b)
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blue23rose
Jun 8, 2019 7:07 AM CST
Speaking of daylily problems, I just walked about my garden yesterday and noticed a lot of buds that will abort. We have had so much rain here in southern Indiana that some farmers will not get all their crops out. It is a sickening year for them.

This is Festive Fall, just one of many like this that I saw in my garden.
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Vickie
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Name: Sue
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Birds Enjoys or suffers cold winters Native Plants and Wildflowers Butterflies Annuals
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sooby
Jun 8, 2019 8:09 AM CST
Vickie, process of elimination - do you have thrips there, and did you have any spring sickness (especially on the plants affected)? Does the pictured cultivar normally have more branching than that? It looks like a split in the scape to the left and a distortion to the one on the right but that could be camera effects.

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