Daylilies forum: Clipping daylily roots

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Name: Joel
Iowa (Zone 5a)
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joelsted
Apr 29, 2018 7:23 PM CST
I'm planning to ship these to my second home in Iowa. Is it ok to clip the roots some or is leaving intact important? Trying to keep a managable size /weight for shipping, but don't want to compromise the plant. Any suggestions welcome.
Thumb of 2018-04-30/joelsted/8bc35d

Name: Maryl
Oklahoma (Zone 7a)
Cat Lover Daylilies Roses Container Gardener Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Cactus and Succulents
Region: Oklahoma Enjoys or suffers hot summers
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Maryl
Apr 30, 2018 12:07 AM CST
I grow almost all my daylilies in pots. In the short version of what I do, every spring I take them out of their pots and hack off about 1- 2 inches of their bottom roots with my little hatchet, so that I can refill the container with fresh soil and fertilizer. They do just fine. So your plants shouldn't have any problems if you take some of the roots off too. There are a few nuances to this if you like. For instance if you have to chop off any of the larger swollen tuberous roots, it might be better to take the whole root off up near the crown where the root narrows just so you don't leave a larger "sore" that could rot. I've seen daylilies with only a few scraggly roots hanging down that once potted up grew like gangbusters. They are amazing plants.........Maryl
Name: Joel
Iowa (Zone 5a)
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joelsted
Apr 30, 2018 6:35 AM CST
Thanks Maryl! Great points. How big of pots do you use for long term growth?
Name: Tina
Greenup, Ky (Zone 6b)
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beenthere
Apr 30, 2018 6:47 AM CST
I like getting them with the roots intact. I feel that the plants exhibit less transplant shock and go to growing again quicker. Have read that those roots die back anyhow, but who really knows? Also, for me at least, seems to lead to better planting success, no sinking and ending up having to be lifted later. But that's just me.
Name: Maryl
Oklahoma (Zone 7a)
Cat Lover Daylilies Roses Container Gardener Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Cactus and Succulents
Region: Oklahoma Enjoys or suffers hot summers
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Maryl
Apr 30, 2018 2:23 PM CST
Joel: Please don't misunderstand me. I grow in pots in my zone 7 garden, I don't think it would work out much north of me at all unless you have a greenhouse. Even in my zone 7 garden I do have losses every year simply because the pots are so exposed over winter. I thought you just wanted to trim the roots until you planted them in the ground. That is what I geared my answer to - showing you that trimming the roots somewhat shouldn't hurt for transport..........Good luck......Maryl
Name: Pat
Near McIntosh, Florida (Zone 9a)
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Xenacrockett
May 2, 2018 4:58 AM CST

I think I read some time ago that old time growers cut off any excess roots and growing big root systems wasn't a goal back then.

I received a plant with an enormous root system. I'm still fairly new to this daylily business and really was puzzled (the excess roots were well over a foot long in addition to the normal roots) on how to handle planting a daylily with all these roots.

Maybe ask your customer what they want.
(Personally, I would want the roots cut off)
Name: Davi (Judy) Davisson
Sherrills Ford, NC (Zone 7a)
Davi
May 2, 2018 11:49 AM CST
Tiny little hair roots will all die off after the plant is planted anyway so their is no point of spending shipping money on hair roots. They should be trimmed off.

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