Cutting back daylilies?

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Cutting back daylilies?

Postby NancyL » Aug 14, 2012 4:21 pm

Hi, I have a problem with my irises that live next to my daylilies. I have a hillside full of 6 year old Stellas and I have interspersed many tall bearded irises in that garden at our place in MI. We spend our summers in MI and the remainder of the year in MD. When we leave the Stellas are still having some blooms. We leave at the end of August and sometimes the first frost here is the second week of September. We are on the border of Zone 4 and 3.

I have been battling a foliar and root fungal disease in my TBI and I have read that it overwinters in daylily foilage but it does no harm to the daylilies. I plan on cutting back my irises real close before we leave for MD. Would it be OK to do the same with the Stellas? I would hope that cleaning up the foliage ahead of fungus starting while we are gone that it might help my irises.
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Cutting back daylilies?

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Re: Cutting back daylilies?

Postby boops » Aug 18, 2012 8:21 pm

I always but back my daylilies after they bloom and clean up all the debris around them. what is happening to your irises? are they spotted? Holes? Maybe a fungicide spray on surrounding soil may help.
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Re: Cutting back daylilies?

Postby NancyL » Aug 19, 2012 9:21 am

Thank boops! I will be cutting them back in a couple of days. My irises have brown spots and some of them even looked like they have been flamed on the leaves. The corms are nice and firm and healthy looking but when I dug them a lot of the roots are rotten underneath. I have just finished cutting them back with pruners dipped in clorox and water for each set of leaves. Boy was that a lot of bending. Then I sprayed fungicide all around the roots and cut back leaves. The ones that looked really bad I dug up - most needed dividing and cut back all the bad roots and dipped them in a fungicide solution let them dry and then sprayed them again. The only bad thing about that is I keep getting more pieces that I know where to put them. I then plant them into a different spot from where they came from to get away from fungus in the soil.

I am going to cut those Stellas way back and get all the dead foliage out of there too. Here is a photo of that garden from this spring as you can see there are a lot of plants in that garden. I bought those Stellas from Hallson in 2007 and they just bloom and bloom. They are much bigger now. Part of my problem I am sure is too much nitrogen fertilizer too. I thought that plants would struggle up here in this cold climate - not so. I haven't put any more on those plants for the last year.
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Re: Cutting back daylilies?

Postby boops » Aug 19, 2012 9:42 am

Your daylily garden must look beautiful in bloom. I just finished dividing most of mine to give the divisions time to root before fall. Hope the following info helps.
Too much nitro makes the foliage lush, at the expense of flowering.

Check out this link
http://www.irises.org/About_Irises/Cult ... eases.html

I only throw bonemeal and the occasional Plant Tone on my Daylily plants. Once in a while i water with Jacks 10-10-10.

Fertilizer requirements for daylily:
Hemerocallis spring only: handful 10-10-10 scattered around each plant and lightly scratched in; OR
spring, summer and fall: 12-12-12 lightly once each season.
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Re: Cutting back daylilies?

Postby Chris_W » Aug 19, 2012 9:56 am

Hi,

Lots of people cut back their iris in summer, shortly after flowering and they grow new, cleaner summer foliage. And you aren't going to hurt stellas if you cut them back. We lift, bare root, cut back, and ship daylilies all summer and they bounce back just fine, so simply cutting them down now isn't going to hurt them :)

About your Iris, if there is too much mulch around them keeping them wetter than they want to be that might be creating some of the fungus issues. Only mulch lightly and try to let them dry out before watering the area.

Hope that helps,

Chris
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Re: Cutting back daylilies?

Postby boops » Aug 19, 2012 10:12 am

this is how I mulched my Iris garden.

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Re: Cutting back daylilies?

Postby NancyL » Aug 21, 2012 8:49 am

Thanks Chris, I have cut them all back. What a job even with the electric hedge trimmer. 45 mature Stellas. Wow. Look at the load of debris that came off from them. it can't go on the regular yard mulch pile either because of the fungus issue so I dumped it out in the woods on a bare spot.



We have to use a strange mulch up here which is tanbark. It is shredded bark which is a by-product of the pulp industry. That is the only mulch that is available in large quantities that we need up here. I pulled it all back when I cut back the irises and put on the fungicide. I don't think moisture is an issue because it is quite a slope but I think that the fungus may overwinter in that mulch too.

daylilies all gone '12.jpg
boops, I know this is off daylilies I would pull back your mulch a little more. I don't have much trouble with weeds with irises. They don't need the mulch to keep the soil cool or allow moisture to remain because irises like it warm and dry.
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The kiss of the sun for pardon
The song of the birds for mirth
One is nearer God's heart in the garden
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