Daylilies forum: So...I think I've just been given a daylily farm

Page 1 of 2 • 1 2
Views: 933, Replies: 26 » Jump to the end
Name: Amber
Missouri (Zone 6a)
Daylilies Region: Missouri Garden Photography
Image
amberjewel
Jul 17, 2017 9:13 AM CST
I have been pretty scarce on here the past couple of months because I have been helping my father-in-law with his daylily farm. He has about 3 acres of daylilies planted in fields and a sizable display garden area that my MIL set up around their house. They had a couple new grand babies added to the family this spring, and my MIL has had some health concerns. Plus my FIL added a 70' greenhouse this year and it is almost full of tomatoe plants...which have taken up almost all of his time.

So I started going out to help weed, then I stayed to help with his Daylily Days (he is just a local farm, no internet presence yet). And now it looks like my hubby and I will be doing most of the digging for when the orders need to be met. I have also been talking to him about ways to make it run more efficiently (see the Lining Out thread I started yesterday).

Anyway, yesterday when we were sitting and talking during a lull in sales. He looked at my hubby and I and asked us if we were ready to just take it over. He wants to focus on tomatoes and another green house with other produce and feels he can't physically keep up with the amount of daylilies he has. I am equal parts excited and terrified about this prospect, but my hubby is fully on board. So expect to see more posts about how to do things like lining out. My big concern right now is weed control. I have a pretty good handle on it here in my little home garden, but on that large of a scale...the weeds are currently winning the war. I also hope to get a website set up, maybe this fall...we will see. Wish me luck!
Amber
Daylily Novice
Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
crawgarden
Jul 17, 2017 9:20 AM CST
Wow, very exciting! I would love to have an opportunity like that, best of luck!
Keep Calm and Carry On
Name: Karen
Southeast PA (Zone 6b)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
kousa
Jul 17, 2017 10:21 AM CST
crawgarden said:Wow, very exciting! I would love to have an opportunity like that, best of luck!


I agree Hurray! Hurray! Wish you all the best!
Name: Judy
Louisiana (Zone 9b)
Region: Louisiana Region: Gulf Coast Hybridizer Seller of Garden Stuff
Image
judydu2
Jul 17, 2017 10:24 AM CST
I wish you much success!
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
Jul 17, 2017 10:30 AM CST
Go for it!
do a website for sure.
Name: Mayo
The Netherlands, Europe (Zone 9a)
Region: Europe Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Organic Gardener Container Gardener
Rabbit Keeper Hellebores Dog Lover Irises Daylilies Cat Lover
Image
Mayo62
Jul 17, 2017 10:39 AM CST
woohoohooo! Hurray!
What a fabulous opportunity, Amber! This really is the stuff of dreams, I guess Lovey dubby

On the other hand I understand your concerns...
Think it through and do your math and I'm sure you will make the right decision Thumbs up


Mayo
a DL flower a day keeps the doctor away
Name: Stan
Florida Panhandle (Defuniak Sp (Zone 8b)
Region: Florida Region: Gulf Coast Enjoys or suffers hot summers Daylilies Lilies Keeps Horses
Dog Lover Garden Photography Butterflies Hummingbirder Birds Bee Lover
Image
GaNinFl
Jul 17, 2017 10:45 AM CST
I agree Good luck Amber. Wishing you great success! Crossing Fingers!
Stan
(Georgia Native in Florida)
http://garden.org/blogs/view/G...
Name: Virginia Harmon
Woodside, CA 94062 (Zone 8b)
Pollen Dauber
Image
VHarmon
Jul 17, 2017 10:46 AM CST
Congratulations! It looks like your future is laid out before you.
You might look at drip irrigation with a fertilizer injection system. It will reduce water waste and ensure even nutrient distribution. After fall cleanup, apply a broad spectrum pre emergent herbicide to get weeds under control. You can disuse that in a year or two and become more organic.

Good luck.
Member of AHS
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Composter Garden Photography Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Region: Alabama
Image
Seedfork
Jul 17, 2017 10:59 AM CST
I think that is great news for all of us...I hope it is great news your you and your husband! Please keep us informed on a step by step basis. This would make a very interesting blog to follow!
Name: Debra
Garland, TX (NE Dallas suburb) (Zone 8a)
Service dogs: Angels with paws.
Dragonflies Dog Lover Bookworm I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Photography Bee Lover
Plays in the sandbox Butterflies Region: Texas Garden Sages I sent a postcard to Randy! Charter ATP Member
Image
lovemyhouse
Jul 17, 2017 11:14 AM CST
Hurray! Hurray! Hurray! Hurray! Hurray!
Every now and then I have a quiet chat with the skeletons in my closet...just so they don't come looking for me on their own.
Name: Diana
Lincoln, NE (Zone 5b)
Daylilies Organic Gardener Dog Lover Bookworm
Image
ShakespearesGarden
Jul 17, 2017 11:49 AM CST
Woohoo! Good for you! (And the rest of us addicts lol). Please do keep us updated with progress. And pictures... And your eventual website... And sales! Whistling
Scout's motto: Be Prepared...
Name: Elena
NYC (Zone 7a)
Daylilies Winter Sowing Hybridizer Peonies Plant and/or Seed Trader Vegetable Grower
Seed Starter Organic Gardener Composter Container Gardener I helped beta test the first seed swap Avid Green Pages Reviewer
Image
bxncbx
Jul 17, 2017 12:15 PM CST
Congratulations Amber!

Start slow, get your feet wet, decide if this is going to be your full-time job and then go for the moon! Oh, and hire some kids in the summer to do the digging for you.

Most of all, have fun!

Name: Jill
Baltimore, MD (Zone 7a)
Daylilies Cat Lover Region: Maryland
Image
Jillz
Jul 17, 2017 12:16 PM CST
Wow! Probably both exciting and a little scary.
Wishing you all the best!
Name: Ginny G
Central Iowa (Zone 5a)
Plant Addict!!
Daylilies Enjoys or suffers hot summers Bee Lover Native Plants and Wildflowers Lilies Garden Art
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Echinacea Region: United States of America Hostas Bulbs Dog Lover
Image
Legalily
Jul 17, 2017 12:24 PM CST
What an awesome opportunity Amber!!! Hurray! Hurray! Hurray! I understand your concern on the weeds, but wow!
Diana you read my mind - keep us posted as to website and sale Whistling Whistling Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing
Be a person that makes others feel special.
Name: Valerie
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Irises Roses Peonies Butterflies Birds
Bee Lover Region: Canadian Ponds Garden Art Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Image
touchofsky
Jul 17, 2017 1:43 PM CST
How exciting! I look forward to your progress! With all the great advice on this forum, I know it will success Hurray!
Name: Amber
Missouri (Zone 6a)
Daylilies Region: Missouri Garden Photography
Image
amberjewel
Jul 17, 2017 1:51 PM CST
Thank you everyone.

A little of the backstory...my FIL has only had the farm going for about 5 years. He was able to buy a lot of bulk inventory from a gentleman who was retiring in our area. My FIL never does anything small either. We have about 350 registered cultivars in 3 acres of fields. Most cultivars are from the late 80s through the early 2000s. These are field tested, hardy varieties as he almost never waters the fields. They look amazing this year because we got rain at all the right times. Many have been there for 5 years now, so the clumps are HUGE!

Right now he just does walk up business. We had over 70 visitors and sold about 500 DF just in the past four weekends of Daylily Days. In the past he has dug orders in late August and then personally delivers them to people.

Some of my goals for the place, which he and I have been discussing for the past month include
1) weed control...we have to find something that works for that area and the types of weeds he has (ragweed, sedge, dandelions, some type of invasive vine, etc)
2) make digging and delivering orders more efficient and done in a way that the plants are delivered right after they are dug. My first priority with that is getting them lined out to make digging easier...and we would have the ability to dig an order the day it was placed if a customer wanted that option. I also think we should eliminate delivery as it just isn't cost effective...but my FIL says he would be willi to keep doing deliveries.
3) eliminate some of the excess inventory. He has LOTS of BIG clumps of some cultivars. We don't need that much inventory. For example, he has about 25 BIG clumps of Hamlet...we will never sell that much, especially not when these things keep multiplying. My plan there is to contact area nurseries and landscapers and offer them bulk prices or per clump prices.
4) website. The biggest reason I haven't done a website yet is that several of the ones out in his fields are mislabeled. Many of the bulk varieties he got from the guy going out of business were already labeled wrong, then he misplaced some labels while mowing, and other labels just wore out over time. So I have spent a LOT of time this year taking pictures of and measuring the mislabeled ones so I can identify them. The man who they purchased them from gave them a master list of which daylilies he owned...so that will narrow down the possibilities quite a bit. However, most are already confirmed, so I am exploring website options. I like the look of the plantstep websites and the cost is good for starting out...if anyone has any inside info on how that website server works, I would love to hear it.
5) yes to the teenage labor! My kids are 14, 12, & 10, and they have a 14 year old cousin. I plan on making them my first labor force (paid of course) Hilarious!

I'm sure I am forgetting something else very important. But those are my steps for now...

Thanks again everyone for the encouragement and advice. Right now I plan on this being part time for me during the school year as I am a speech therapist at a school. But that also means I am almost completely free mid-May to mid-August...which is prime garden season for us. We will see where it goes from here!
Amber
Daylily Novice
Name: Valerie
Ontario, Canada (Zone 4a)
Daylilies Irises Roses Peonies Butterflies Birds
Bee Lover Region: Canadian Ponds Garden Art Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Image
touchofsky
Jul 17, 2017 1:58 PM CST
The daylily garden near me has a bloomfest for a couple of weeks in summer and during that time they offer clump sales and they also give a bonus daylily if you purchase multiple daylilies. That may be a way to get rid of some of the big clumps and noids.
Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
crawgarden
Jul 17, 2017 2:18 PM CST
Maybe it would be good to visit a few daylily farms and talk to the owners about your ideas, benchmark on others ideas and mistakes.
Keep Calm and Carry On
Name: Ginny G
Central Iowa (Zone 5a)
Plant Addict!!
Daylilies Enjoys or suffers hot summers Bee Lover Native Plants and Wildflowers Lilies Garden Art
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Echinacea Region: United States of America Hostas Bulbs Dog Lover
Image
Legalily
Jul 17, 2017 4:37 PM CST
It sounds like you have a really good start on things Amber! And also people here are giving good advice! Good luck Crossing Fingers! Thumbs up
Be a person that makes others feel special.
southern Kentucky (Zone 6b)
Image
alilyfan
Jul 17, 2017 4:52 PM CST
Sounds like you have a lot of great plans, and a perfect job to free you up too. Best of luck!

Page 1 of 2 • 1 2

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« Daylilies forum
You must first create a username and login before you can reply to this thread.

Member Login:

Username:

Password:

[ Join now ]

Today's site banner is by Paul2032 and is called "Daisy with bug"