Should I Deadhead Daylilies?

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The Latin name for daylilies is "Hemerocallis." Translated, it means " beauty for a day." This popular perennial plant’s flowers last only about 18 hours before they shrivel and die. But the flush of blooms they produce can be extended or coaxed into reblooming a second time if the plant is properly deadheaded.

Reasons for Deadheading

  • Deadheading is important for daylilies to keep the plant looking tidy and well maintained, and to encourage blooming. According to Dutchbulbs.com, daylilies are "genetically programmed for several periods of bloom, but they do need a rest period between them." Removing spent flowers encourages the plant to put more energy into continue flowering instead of setting seed. Unless you are collecting them, there is no reason for daylilies to set seed. New daylilies propagated from seed usually are weaker, less-flowering versions of their parent plants. Propagation from dividing daylilies is a much more effective method. With regular deadheading and seed pod removal, you can not only prolong the initial blooming period for daylilies but often you can coax a second blooming after a period of rest. One popular variety, the Stella D’Oro, constantly blooms throughout the season if well maintained by deadheading.

How to Deadhead Daylilies

  • Snap the dead blossom off at the base of the entire flower, not just the petals, where it joins the scape or stalk. Be careful not to snap off nearby buds, as they sometimes can get in the way. Once all of the buds on a scape have bloomed, cut the scape down to the ground. If properly deadheaded, seed pods will not form on bloom-barren scapes. If they do form, simply cut the scape with the seedpods.

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