I will have large island beds to fill when we move to SC. I'm not sure how to plan for planting the DL as I've always had boxed beds at home. I know taller usually goes in the middle, but I have some low scaped plants that have such vigor they over shadow their neighbors.
I want to do a National Display Garden, so I'm thinking maybe of planting in themes. Would you rather see like colors together, like forms together, or what?
Help! I'm absolutely no good at this. Eventually I'll add companion plants but right now it will just be daylilies with a few iris. Here's what a couple of the beds look like now.
Are these photos of your gardens in S.C. or in Florida? I'd just stuff each and every bed as full of all the different daylilies.
I've been doing some of my iris gardens by hybridizers. I also love gardens with themes. Hopefully someone with alot more experience than me will tell you exactly what you need to know. All I do is stick them in the ground, label, water and fertilize them and watch them grow. Of course now I learn that I should have separated the tets and dips and now I'm going to make a spider section too.
Alot of times in our eagerness to jump out there and get our feet wet we find ourselves up to our neck in water. LOL I always do everything the hard way. Then have to re-dig things and plant them somewhere else later on.
Some of the seedlings I have are so short that I'm going to be forced to move them to the front of the pack. I guess it's a good thing I like playing in the dirt.
I will be anxious to read what all the big hybridizers advise you. I'm sure several of us need to know and can use this information to make our daylily beds a little more organized.
I have mixed beds, and I know you are going to get a bizillion different ideas/opinions on this, but I have always put the taller growing things in the back, and the DL's up front...regardless to how tall the DL's are. Most (I know not all) but most DL's, minus some minis) have about the same, or average to same foliage, so the blooms to me don't matter in regard to height. If a DL that bloomed was only 12-14" tall, but there was something in front of it that was 24-36" in hieght, would the shorter one really not be visible? I don't think the scapes are bushy enough to conceal their neighbors...lol. That's just my 2 cents though...and again I have a feeling that everyone is going to have something different to add.
I hope you can incorporate that Agapanthus into the DL bed...I wish I could grow them as perennials up here :-/ I'm jealous already and haven't seen a DL yet...lol
Thank you both.
Marian, those are the SC beds. The azaleas will just have to go. By hybridizer is an idea I hadn't thought of.
Thom, I will be taking 2 forms of agapanthas with me. I have giant ones for the middle and minis for front. I like mixed beds. There are several clumps of iris there already but I don't know what kind. If you want some DL, let me know next year and I'll send you some seedlings.
Leslies please find someone in the area that will rescue the azaleas!!! Pretty please. In Tyler Texas we have the Azalea Trails and it is to die for. Miles and miles of homes with the most breathtaking gardens, water features, bulbs, and so forth all blooming at the same time. They are a beautiful contrast to the water also. People come from all over the world to see them when they are in bloom. Do you have any Dogwoods? They and the azaleas bloom at or near the same time here in East Texas.
Maybe you could leave the azaleas for the first season and see exactly how the entire neighborhood looks when everything is blooming at the same time. I'd rather remove some of the trees than plants that are established and reward you each year with tons of blooms. I know the azaleas are not very pretty when they are not in bloom but nothing compares with them early in spring when they are in full bloom.
If nothing else maybe you can move them to one area of the yard. I'm so crazy, I'm all choked up from just the thought of you digging them. I have about 8 here and would love to have my entire place covered in them.
Oh well we all have different taste and that's what makes each of us tick.
Happy Gardening, and all that good stuff.
Love YOu, Marian
Leslie, since the azaleas will bloom before the daylilies, I would leave as many as possible. They make a great background for daylilies, and can be kept trimmed (right after bloom). I'd thin out some of the Iris. Since the display garden is not the "growing" area, it will give you good "bones". The display gardens I have seen have mixed beds, and are used to show how plants will look in the home landscape.
I would leave as many azaleas as you can and this winter or late fall relocate the ones you have to move to closer to the water. The reflection of the blooms on the water is breath taking. Azaleas' roots are shallow and they need lots of water to do well. The ones in the most shade could stay as that area is too shady for any daylilies to thrive. Once you see the azaleas bloom this spring, you will see why others are in favor of not destroying them. I have some daylilies mixed in with other perennials. Others are in beds of just daylilies with them staggered so plant markers can be seen. I do like to put the taller ones to the back and the shortest ones up front. We plant our dips together and our tets together for hybridizing. We have one area where we have UFO's and spiders together, but also have other areas where they are mixed in with full form daylilies. I occasionally will put certain colors together to compliment each other if their heights work out. I personally like a lot of color so I tend to mix our colors. We have over 1600 labeled cultivars and have just become an AHS Display Garden. I tried once to keep certain hybridizers' DLs together but that did not last long as we continue to add more plants. However you decide to do it, I know it will look great. You can't go wrong!
Leslie, I wish I had planted azaleas years ago. My Mom had lost several one harsh winter and I guess I thought the same would happen to me. Now I believe some work better in colder climates.
I have mixed beds. I need to take a pic of my front bed. It has TB iris and Dls. A few yellow mini marigolds for ground level color. I put in one oldie, Custard Candy because it blooms so well for me. A few spidery ones in the back.
Mini dls on the ends.
The back bed has dls, TBs, dwarf iris, a couple of L. iris clumps, clematis, one big peony
true lilies, etc. It is just a hodge podge but I love it!
I see some iris (at least they look like iris) in the first pic that need to be moved out of the shade. They want sun.
As far as the agapanthus go, I have (as well as my friends) a lot of trouble growning them here in Florence. I don't know about the Columbia area, but in all my years of living here, I have never seen aggies growing in Cola. My mom has aggies in Hilton Head, but that area is very similar to Florida.
Oh, they like sun too? Well good! They would be a good centerpiece to the island. There are azaleas all over the improved part of the property. There are a special kind on the front, can't remember what, that have smaller leaves and blooms.
Azaleas are fine in sun. Be sure to water well especially the first summer once they have been moved or planted. The roots are shallow and need water to get established. The best time to plant is the late fall or very early spring even before blooming time.You can move yours even during the winter. You will love them when they bloom in the spring. Your new home is absolutely beautiful!
Oh Leslie, do try to keep your azaleas, or at least wait until they have bloomed next spring to make a decision. I grew up in Pinehurst, NC where the azaleas and camelias made it look like a fairyland in the spring. I pined for azaleas and camelias for the 35 years we lived in Northern Illinois, and when we moved to AR the first thing we planted were azaleas and for several years added more until now we have about 60, including some Encore. They can tolerate some shade, too. The ones with small leaves are probably gumpo. They don't get very large, however, our indicas that started out about a foot tall are now about 10 feet. They can be trimmed back if you don't want them to get too large. As far as garden design, our yard is a mish-mash of things I like. Sometimes I sit on my bench in the yard and try to visualize how things would look in different places. Even if I don't come up with a plan, the rest has done me some good! I'm sure next spring when you are sitting in that beautiful garden tub and look out the window, you will be glad you kept the azaleas.
What/Where is the daylily image group that was mentioned earlier?
I am in the process of builing a new house and will need to move all my flower beds next year. Currently I have everything planted in rows for easy mowing but also because we knew that they would all need moved when we build our house.
I have about 130 daylilies now but I am always adding, I also have about 50 iris. Right now the daylilies and iris are mixed together. They seem to be doing ok, but I have read that this is a bad idea because of the water/fertiizer requirements.
The azealas and the camellias bloom alot longer than the daylilies, my money is on they stay, lol. My daylilies are right in front of mine. I cant imagine not having either of those plants. They dont die back and look great all year. Camellias last a good long time inside.
I guess I'm spoiled. I've lived all but 5 years in Florida where azaleas are SO common I've come the think of them as boring. I will keep these for at least a year. I promise. I may have to move some as I have to get the DL in the ground and need those amended beds but will do my best.
Welllllll...thats kinda like saying we have dogwood in FL. I think your going to be pleasantly surprised. Not to mention...to have something that doesnt loose its leaves AND blooms. Not many choices in that category. Camelias are the king tho...in my un-aksed-for opinion. lol
Are you going to try to move AND get all your plants in in August. Do you know where you want them...what about pots???
Just some random thoughts...I think that you might want to consider bloom time in the beds. Either decide to have a mass of bloom at one time in each bed or decide on a bed that will bloom over a longer period of time with sparser bloom. You might want to think about beds by type - you know, doubles, spiders, etc. On the other hand i have a bed with all off white daylilies with different types all in the same bed that is very attractive. The only problem with doing it by color if you don't have different types is that the flowers sort of get lost in terms of being an individual bloom.
Shot Fire Shuckings, don't move any of the plants that are already there. Just make the entire place one big flowerbed. LOL Plant several rows of daylilies in front of the Azealeas, and camelias. That's what I do, I just keep making the flowerbeds wider/deeper/longer. Then leave a little room to walk and then start another bed.
In my opinion, I'd try to set a focal point in each area, as if each where a room in the garden. Be it yard sculpture, art,
or color. To me a tall arch or arbor draws the eye to an area and build around that to add color height, privacy, or a path to meader down. Ideally a twisting turning path with a suprize garden sculpture or burst of color sets the heart and eye a flutter. My azalas are in shade and bloom well every year. I just got some gardenia to add for fragrant enhancement, and a Sage. I also have a love for ferns which add texture and mix wonderfully with daylilies as their backdrop. I have shepards hooks with a mixture of hanging baskets that pull the eye up and across the garden. When I water them they drip and water other plants below. I was thinking recently of making garden accents out of old colorful dishware and bird baths out of crystal like lamp shades. This I think makes your garden peak with personality and makes it your own. Sort of gives your garden character. Just my thoughts...
Also, you might consider a low border plant in front of your beds. That can make the chaos of different daylilies seem orderly. This is escallonia compakta and I prune it back hard every year after it flowers in July. I know that I've seen some photos of similar treatments in daylily gardens. Something even lower like lamb's ears would do the same thing.
I'd love to be able to use Lamb's Ears, but the humidity, here, just won't let me grow them over a season or two. I've even tried to grow them in cinder blocks, in catcus potting soil. Too much water! Except for this last month, but our weather hasn't been "normal" lately.
Leslie, you have a beautiful setting to start with. Can't wait to see what you do with it. One thing I think is important is to make the beds narrow enough that it's easy to get in to deadhead and divide. Also, if it will be a National Display Garden someday, you might want to think of making pathways that would be easy for wheelchairs and handicapped people to access. I agree with doss that a unified border might be nice on the more permanent beds. I have seen liriope used around some beds in the South. My beds are divided somewhat into hot and cool colors, but I also like rainbow mixes.
Susan is right on the narrow beds. I started out narrow but when new ones came in I sometimes just tilled down the front. If you are wanting to make crosses it is almost impossible to do without having problems.
I have Big Blue lirope. Just LMK It grows like crazy. I have even traded it for more daylilies :)
From the look of the azaleas in your photos, they are very well established and should do fine once any trees are taken down. We've had large azaleas at each of our houses. While azaleas can be hard to establish in full sun locations, once they are established, they are difficult to kill! This is a photo from our previous home. When we moved in, the azaleas were all spindly and sick looking. They had been in for a very long time, but had never been pruned or fertilized. I hated the shape and height of them. With nothing to lose, I just whacked them down from about 6 foot tall sticks (no kidding!) to about 1 foot tall. I then fertilized and kept them regularly watered (not wet, but never thirsty). They rewarded me by quickly filling out to beautiful, round, covered-in-bloom beauties. Here's a pic of some of them:
My point is, your well-established azaleas will be hardy enough to take full sun just fine, and will also be happy to have a haircut to develop a well-manicured form as a backdrop for your daylily gardens. I would keep them if I were you! Evey =)
P.S. - Doss, I agree, your garden is "to die for"!!!
I think that all gardens are in process. I'm sure that the time it takes depends on the landscape and how much help you are willing to get. Something's always dying or needing replacement. Lavender goes leggy (all of mine currently in that condition), plants have their natural life span, areas become shady that were once in sun... And then of course there are the new plants we just can't live without. What's most important at the beginning is a good layout or general plan. Then plants go easily into the scheme.
I've just had to address another area where there were bearded iris that weren't happy. I've replaced them with hakone grass and dahlias and that seems to be working better.
LOL, if you ask the gardeners at Disney, it takes a day. It always amazes me how quickly they can change the seasonal landscape (literally overnight) and the next day, the new plants look like they have been there forever!
Hi Leslie, 2 main details come to mind when arranging these. First, I know the pathways were already mentioned, but if these are going to be displayed, think of all the people who will be trying to get closeup views, and knocking off buds. making it really obvious where to walk and where not to may be a good idea.
As far as planting them, everyone has great ideas. By type, by breeder, by year, by theme, by bloomtime, or deliberately mixing up those details for effect, such as doing color rows, or style rows, or alternating. There is no one right way, and whatever you come up with will reflect your personality. The other big detail that comes to mind, however, is your breeding. For your own sanity, try to plant the ones you are most likely to want to breed with near each other, and leave a bit of empty space in that area, also. You know you will have a few more that you just have to breed with! Some annual or biannual can fill the space for now.
How about doing a variety of these options, specifically to show visitors the different ways they can be assembled? You can do a mini-plot of each of the recommendations. Chances are one type will respond more to a potential customer or new recruit.
Bluegrass Mom: In answer to your question, Encore azaleas do rebloom. I have several and one in particular gives me several flushes each year. When I get back home and to my pictures, I will send you a picture of mine. Just feed them after they bloom in the spring and again in the fall and they will put on a real show for you.
Yes, Encore is the name that I couldn't think of. I have seen them at Lowe's and Home Depot. I live near a nice nursery but they do not stock the Encore. I am glad that you posted a report.
Bluegrassmom, we planted two different cultivars of Encore azaleas at this house... Autumn Embers (a short red) and Autumn Royalty (a mid-size purple/pink). Although they sell them at our local garden centers, these are one of the few plant purchases we've made at Lowe's. When I wrote to the Encore grower, they responded that the same quality of plant stock is used to supply Lowe's and regular garden centers, but at different times of year. One receives their shipments in Spring and the other in Fall.
There are 23 different types of Encore azaleas, and they vary quite a bit in color and size. Here's a link to the website with all the different choices:
One of the cultivars we planted (Autumn Royalty) received the 'Azalea of the Year' award from the American Rhododendron Society. It blooms about 3 times a year for us and has established easily. The other cultivar we chose (Autumn Embers) blooms 2-3 times a year for us, but it has been more tempermental and difficult to establish. HTH! Ev =)