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How to Divide Daylilies in the Fall


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Daylilies are hardy perennials that transplant best in the fall of the year. The leaves do not have to turn brown before dividing the tubers; the daylily will take advantage of the green leaves to feed the roots after moving. The new planting site should be prepared before lifting the divided plants from the existing soil. The roots should not be allowed to dry out during the division process. Daylilies are best divided every four to seven years to avoid overcrowding.

Difficulty:
Moderate

Instructions

Things You’ll Need
  • Shovel
  • Garden rake
  • Soil amendment compost
  • Spade fork
  • Scissors
  • Mulch
    1. Dig the new transplant site with a shovel to a depth of 12 to 18 inches. Remove all rocks, errant vegetative matter and roots with a garden rake.
    2. Add 2 to 3 inches of compost over the new flowerbed. Work the soil amendment into the soil with a shovel.
    3. Make planting holes that are spaced approximately 6 to 8 inches apart. Form the soil inside the hole in the shape of a pyramidal mound. One divided daylily tuber will be placed in each hole.
    4. Remove the daylily plants using a spade fork. Work the tines of the fork under the plant, and lift it from the soil. Avoid removing too much soil from the roots.
    5. Spread a single plant tuber over the pyramidal soil mound. Cover the tuber with soil so the final depth is 1 inch below the surface. Water the tuber, and plant immediately.
    6. Trim the leaves of the daylily transplant with scissors to between 4 to 6 inches long to aid in water conservation to the roots. Mulch around the new plants with 2 to 3 inches of an organic material.

Tips & Warnings

  • Fertilize the new transplants the following spring with a well-balanced plant food. Ensure the new plants receive 1 inch of water every week. Do not overwater since the tubers are susceptible to rot.

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