How to Groom Daylilies for Shows

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Grooming and preparing your award-winning daylilies before a show is essential. If your daylilies are improperly groomed or tagged, it could mean the difference between an appreciative nod and a well-deserved blue ribbon. Whether it’s your first flower show, or you’re an award-winning veteran in the daylily hall of fame, it never hurts to brush up on your grooming tips and skills before a big show.

Difficulty:
Moderately Easy

Instructions

Things You’ll Need
  • Hand-held pruning sheers
  • Cuticle scissors
  • Razor blade
  • Make-up brush (small)
  • Damp paper towels
  • Tag and string
    1. Select a daylily specimen that has a high number of buds, but which don’t get in the way of the bloom. Check the specimen for irreparable damage and too many spent blooms. Any stem with more than three spent blooms shouldn’t be picked for competition.
    2. Wipe your daylily gently with a damp paper towel to remove dirt, brown spots and other garden debris. Also wipe down the buds.
    3. Scrape gently with a razor at unwanted brown spots on the stem and buds. Be careful to avoid over-scraping, which could result in unwanted damage the judges will notice upon inspection.
    4. Use cuticle scissors or a sharp razor to cut off spent blooms, buds or brown spots remaining from spent blooms or buds.
    5. Brush dust and pollen from the petals, leaves and stamen with a small make-up brush.
    6. Inspect the groomed bloom one final time, being sure to remove any small brown spotting or brown leaves you didn’t catch the first time.
    7. Create a tag containing the show number, flower name and your name and keep it with the flower when you enter it into the show. You should be able to find the show number for your particular species in the show’s guide rules.

Tips & Warnings

  • Bypass any daylilies that will take too much grooming and could result in disqualification for scrape scars.

  • Make sure all your tools are sharpened to avoid accidental tearing or damage while grooming.

  • In order to avoid extra spent blooms, clip your flower the morning of the show, rather than the night before.

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