Daylily Going Bananas

November 30, 2007

Walters Gardens ’ Going Bananas daylily is an improvement of Happy Returns from its own breeding program. The plant got its moniker because it flowered so profusely for so long that plants looked like they were “going bananas” in the garden, according to Walters’ director of marketing communications Susan Martin.

The canary-yellow flowers with a green throat measure 4 inches in diameter and are slightly fragrant. The color is a bit lighter than Happy Returns. Recurved, overlapping petals have slightly ruffled margins.

Plants produce 10-15 well-spaced flowers per scape. Flowers open symmetrically just above the foliage. Going Bananas starts flowering one to two weeks later than Happy Returns in early summer, but will bloom continuously into early fall.

To produce Going Bananas, Walters Gardens recommends a growing temperature of 60°. Growing medium pH should be 6.2-6.7. Fertilization isn’t necessary during the first few weeks of production. After that, apply a controlled-release fertilizer incorporated at a rate of 1 pound of nitrogen per yard of growing medium, or 50-100 parts per million nitrate delivered as a constant liquid feed.

Keep plants evenly moist until they are established. Allow the medium to dry out between waterings.

Late-summer plantings will produce bigger plants with more flowers. Allow six to eight weeks for rooting before temperatures remain below freezing. Don’t fertilize.

To overwinter, trim plants back to 2 inches late in the season. If trimmed too early, plants will re-grow. Cover with protective cloth if left in a cold frame. Ventilate if temperatures are above 40°.

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For more: Walters Gardens , (888) 925-8377; www.waltersgardens.com.

- Jyme Mariani