Gardening Magazine

Plant of the Week: Hemerocallis Fulva

By Davis Landscape Architecture @DavisLandArch

Hemerocallis fulva (18/05/2013, Kew Gardens, London)

Hemerocallis fulva (18/05/2013, Kew Gardens, London)

Position: Full sun to partial shade

Flowering period: Early summer to autumn

Soil: Moist, well drained

Eventual Height: 1m

Eventual Spread: 50cm

Hardiness: 4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b

Family: Xanthorrhoeaceae

Hemerocallis fulva is a deciduous (evergreen in milder climates) herbaceous perennial with a clump forming habit. Its mid green leaves are strap shaped, arching and up to 90cm long and 25mm broad. It’s yellow to red flowers are trumpet shaped, up to 10cm across, appear on naked stems above the leaves in groups of up to 20. Its flowers last for only one day, hence the common name. Its fruit is a capsule which is up to 25mm long and 15mm broad. Its roots are tuberous which aids its slow spread.

Hemerocallis fulva, commonly known as the Orange Daylily, Tawny Daylily,  Tiger Daylily or Ditch Daylily, is native to large pats of Asia, from the Caucasus to Japan. In its native habitat it grows in forest thickets, stream sides and grasslands. This perennial is considered to be an invasive species in parts of the USA and Canada. Parts of this perennial are toxic to cattle and sheep.

The etymological root of the binomial name Hemerocallis is derived from the Greek amera meaning ‘day’ and kellos meaning ‘beauty’. Fulva is derived from the Latin fulvus meaning ‘reddish yellow; yellow’.

The landscape architect may find Hemerocallis fulva useful as a low growing ground cover and works well when planted en mass. Due to this plants tuberous roots it may be used to stabilise banks. This plant will tolerate atmospheric pollution and is not attractive deer to rabbits. It is drought tolerant once established.

Ecologically, Hemerocallis fulva is attractive to pollinating insects.

Hemerocallis fulva Flower (18/05/2013, Kew Gardens, London)

Hemerocallis fulva Flower (18/05/2013, Kew Gardens, London)

Hemerocallis fulva prefers moist, deep, fertile, well-drained soils. It tolerates most pH of soil.

Hemerocallis fulva requires little maintenance. Large clumps may be divided in late autumn or spring.

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