Can Daylilies Be Moved in the Winter?


An established clump of daylilies can be moved from one area in the yard to another in the winter in warm southern climates. Daylilies are resilient herbaceous perennials that can be planted successfully at any time during the growing season. As long as the ground is not frozen and the soil can be worked easily with a shovel, it is safe to plant daylilies.

Preferable Timing

  • Daylilies that bloom in the late summer or early fall are classified as very late bloomers.

    While daylilies can be transplanted successfully throughout the growing season, the best time to move them is right after they finish blooming. This could be late spring, summer or fall, depending on the type of daylily. Some daylilies are classified as "everblooming," which means they bloom all summer long. In general, early fall or early spring are the preferable times to move daylilies.


  • Direct hot afternoon sun can cause dark blooms to bleach or fade.

    Prepare the new planting location before digging up the daylilies. Any vegetation currently growing there should be removed and the soil tilled up or loosened with a shovel. Soil amendments should be added and thoroughly mixed into the soil before the daylilies are planted. Make sure they will get plenty of sunlight in the new location. Daylilies grow best with full sun or some light shade, although dark-colored blooms retain their colors better when they are shaded from the bright midday sun.


  • Daylilies can usually be lifted easily with a garden fork.

    Dig up the daylilies by pushing a garden fork into the soil near the root clump and lifting the entire clump up out of the soil. In situations where the daylilies have been growing for many years and the clump has become quite large, a spade or dirt shovel may be required. Care should be taken to leave as many roots intact as possible.


  • Extremely large clumps of daylilies can first be divided with a spade.

    Moving daylilies from one location to another is a good opportunity to divide them. Remove the soil from the roots by gently shaking the clump, or use a hose to wash the soil away. Gently work the clumps apart, or cut them apart with a sharp kitchen or pocket knife into sections with two to three fans or leaf clusters. A single fan will grow fine, but groups of two or three are preferable. Try to avoid cutting the roots below the clumps.


  • Space the clumps 1-1/2 to 2 feet apart to give daylilies plenty of room to grow.

    Plant the daylilies in their new location no deeper than 1 inch below ground level. The crowns on each clump, where the vegetative part of the plant grows out of the roots, should have no more than 1 inch of soil covering them. Trim any remaining leaves or stems back to 5 to 6 inches, and water the newly planted daylilies generously.

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