While purchasing new plants for your garden is always fun it can be equally enjoyable to increase some of your favorite existing plants as well. Daylilies are a staple of most gardens including my own. Their ability to adapt to many environments and a variety of planting conditions make them a highly desirable plant and believe me, once you have some of them you’re going to want more! Fortunately, daylilies are not shy when it comes to reproducing themselves and it’s easy to “get more of a good thing” if you know how to go about it and Blooming Secrets will show you how to do it!
The process by which you increase your daylilies is usually, in garden lingo, called division. You can divide daylilies pretty much any time but they will usually provide a signal to you when they are ready to be divided. If you have a clump of daylilies that aren't blooming prolifically than the plant is telling you it is time for division. Overcrowding causes the amount of daylily blooms to decrease and division is the way to get them to bloom as you expect them too.
If you’ve never divided daylilies before the process may seem a little Draconian but trust me it is for the plants own good! The first step in the process is to trim the daylily leaves down to about 3 to 6 inches in height. This is a signal to the plant that once it is divided you want it to put energy into growing roots first and leaves second. Your next step is to use a spade or shovel to dig out the daylily clump. You’ll want to go down about a foot to ensure that you retain as much of the root system as you possibly can. The next step involves dividing the daylily clump into smaller pieces. You’ll see once you’ve dug up the plant that there are a lot of smaller daylily plants in the clump.
This is where things can get “ugly”. Some gardeners use a sharp spade or a pitchfork to separate the plants from one another. I personally like to shake the clump in my hands and then gently peel the plants off. Regardless of what method you choose daylilies are tough and you are not killing the plant. You can take these pieces and plant them in your garden with the root system just below the soil line. Give them a good soaking with the hose and some mulch and they are ready for action. The larger the plants that you have the quicker they will grow to maturity but you can plant even the smaller ones if you have the patience to wait for them to get established. You can expect to have to perform this task every 5 to 6 years in most gardens.
As I mentioned I have divided daylilies throughout the growing season but the best time to do so is in the late summer or early in the spring. If you live in a USDA zone with a shorter growing season such as Zones 3 through 5 you may do better dividing them in the spring rather than the summer as it will give the plant a whole growing season to get their roots established. So, now that you know all about dividing daylilies it is time to “go forth and multiply”!