Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Daylily
Hemerocallis 'Happy Returns'

Family: Hemerocallidaceae (hem-er-oh-kal-id-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Hemerocallis (hem-er-oh-KAL-iss) (Info)
Cultivar: Happy Returns
Hybridized by Apps; Year of Registration or Introduction: 1986

» View all varieties of Daylilies

12 vendors have this plant for sale.

47 members have or want this plant for trade.

12-18 in. (30-45 cm)

15-18 in. (38-45 cm)
18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing the rootball
By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Bloom Time:
Extra early (EE)

Flower Size:
Small (3" to 4.5" diameter)

Blooming Habit:
Diurnal (diu.)
Extended (ext.)

Flower Type:

Bloom Color:
Bright Yellow

Color Patterns:

Flower Fragrance:
Slightly Fragrant

Foliage Habit:
Dormant (dor.)


Awards (if applicable):
Honorable Mention

Click thumbnail
to view:

By Mainer
Thumbnail #1 of Hemerocallis  by Mainer

By loic
Thumbnail #2 of Hemerocallis  by loic

By DaylilySLP
Thumbnail #3 of Hemerocallis  by DaylilySLP

By DaylilySLP
Thumbnail #4 of Hemerocallis  by DaylilySLP

By Melissa_Ohio
Thumbnail #5 of Hemerocallis  by Melissa_Ohio

By jody
Thumbnail #6 of Hemerocallis  by jody

By yvana
Thumbnail #7 of Hemerocallis  by yvana

There are a total of 37 photos.
Click here to view them all!


10 positives
1 neutral
1 negative

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive mika2 On Jun 22, 2012, mika2 from Easton, MD wrote:

I have many Happy Returns and they do really well in my garden. I have a question. After the first bloom, should I deadhead all the flowers to help with a second bloom. My second bloom is usually minimual. I live near the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland. Thanks for any help.....

Positive hamptons On May 13, 2012, hamptons from Watermill, NY wrote:

Wonderful plant, lots of blooms. Far outperforms Stella D'Oro and I prefer the more lemon yellow color of Happy Returns. I have a few that are in shade most of the day bit still perform well.

I just bought some Fragrant Returns, which I hope will be as reliable a rebloomer as Happy Returns.. and it should smell nice,too.

Positive SusieSunflower On Jan 8, 2012, SusieSunflower from Wichita, KS (Zone 6a) wrote:

This pure lemon colored little daylily couldn't be more perfectly named. Prolific bloomer that sometimes reblooms depending on our weather. Why Stella d'Oro dominates the market is beyond me! Happy Returns should dominate instead. If a garden center handles daylilies at all, they have tables full of Stella d'Oro with few, if any other varieties. Instead of mass plantings of just Stella, why don't they plant a row of Stella with a row of Happy Returns in front and the red Little Business behind? Wouldn't that make more of an impact? Not to mention much prettier!

Positive Seedfork On Dec 2, 2011, Seedfork from Enterprise, AL (Zone 8b) wrote:

I am so happy with Happy Returns. It is Dec. 2nd here in south Alabama, this plant is planted in a bed at the front of my house ( facing north) and it is still blooming.

Negative coppelia On Jul 10, 2011, coppelia from Redmond, WA wrote:

I grew this hardy cheerful plant for over 10 years with no problems and little care. However, for the past 3 years it has been infested with daylily gall midges which ruin most of the buds. I have been told by a large local nursery that it can only be well-controlled here with the use of a systemic insect control which endangers bees. My other option is to get rid of 'Happy Returns' and replace them with a later-blooming lily.

Positive nwh On Jul 19, 2010, nwh from Chicago, IL wrote:

This is just about the most cheerful plant there is. It starts blooming in the early summer and it blooms every single day. I was a little suprised that (for me) Happy Returns has bloomed more than Stella d'Oro. I have both planted in a mixed border, with a few other varieties of daylilies. I started all the plants there last fall. By far this has had the most blooms and it has bloomed nonstop for months. With HR and Stella and some easy landscape roses I now have a pretty border where we had just an ugly area along the side of the garage --with very minimal care. I should have done this years ago.

Positive Mainer On Jan 22, 2009, Mainer from Durham, ME (Zone 3a) wrote:

Just love this plant. Blooms more often than Stella Doro around here and can survive winters in this zone planted in containers. Very hardy and dainty. I love the color of Suzie Wong and the shape of Stella Doro that shows up clearly in this plant. This is always going to be somewhere in my garden in many spots no doubt. Right now it shows off my morning glories in container pots by our patio deck.

Positive Candyce On Jul 19, 2008, Candyce from The Monadnock Region, NH (Zone 5a) wrote:

We planted one fan of this lily last fall, September 21 2007 to be precise. When the massive snows melted this spring, we were afraid that the day lily may not have survived the winter. We hung in there, though, and the plant bounced back well.

The scapes held a lot of buds, which surprised us as this was its first year in the garden. It first bloomed for us in early July of this year, and still has buds on the scapes. It looks like we will enjoy this day lily for a few more weeks. And, for quite a few more seasons.

Positive northgrass On Mar 5, 2005, northgrass from West Chazy, NY (Zone 4b) wrote:

Loads of nice soft yellow blooms, mixing well with neighboring plants. The plants are also a nice size for the front of the border. It has a very long blooming season similar to Stella del Oro but with a much softer colored flower.

Neutral smiln32 On Nov 27, 2004, smiln32 from Oklahoma City, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:

'Happy Returns' has yellow 3 inch flowers. This plant reaches a height of 18". Blooms early in the season and repeats bloom cycle later in fall or late summer.

Prefers sun to partial shade, but blooms are more prolific in sunnier sites. It also likes more moisture than some other daylilies, especially prior to blooming.

Positive mystic On Jan 23, 2003, mystic from Ewing, KY (Zone 6a) wrote:

3.50" bright yellow blooms,18" scapes. Great rebloomer that has made a great addition to my garden. A sure keeper.

Positive MORNINGGLORY On Aug 25, 2002, MORNINGGLORY from Montrose, PA (Zone 5a) wrote:

Blooms for long period with many flower scapes.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Logan Lake,
Enterprise, Alabama
Holly Pond, Alabama
Kenai, Alaska
Bentonville, Arkansas
Fayetteville, Arkansas
Jonesboro, Arkansas
Palo Alto, California
Denver, Colorado
New Haven, Connecticut
Old Lyme, Connecticut
Waterbury, Connecticut
Rehoboth Beach, Delaware
Wilmington, Delaware
Bartow, Florida
Fort Myers, Florida
Trenton, Florida
Barnesville, Georgia
Stone Mountain, Georgia
Thomson, Georgia
Wrens, Georgia
Eastport, Idaho
Cherry Valley, Illinois
Chicago, Illinois
Lake In The Hills, Illinois
Maroa, Illinois
Moline, Illinois
Oak Lawn, Illinois
Washington, Illinois
Indianapolis, Indiana
Logansport, Indiana
Solsberry, Indiana
Ankeny, Iowa
Derby, Kansas
Hesston, Kansas
Wichita, Kansas
Ewing, Kentucky
Mount Sterling, Kentucky
Bordelonville, Louisiana
Trout, Louisiana
Durham, Maine
Litchfield, Maine
South China, Maine
, Manitoba
Millersville, Maryland
Brookline, Massachusetts
Dracut, Massachusetts
Franklin, Massachusetts
Hopkinton, Massachusetts
Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts
Dearborn Heights, Michigan
Flint, Michigan
Kalamazoo, Michigan
Lincoln Park, Michigan
Owosso, Michigan
Royal Oak, Michigan (2 reports)
Hibbing, Minnesota
Brandon, Mississippi
Camdenton, Missouri
Florissant, Missouri
Springfield, Missouri
Auburn, New Hampshire
Munsonville, New Hampshire
Jackson, New Jersey
Jefferson, New York
Kew Gardens, New York
Rochester, New York
Water Mill, New York
Broadway, North Carolina
Concord, North Carolina
Elizabeth City, North Carolina
Kernersville, North Carolina
Morehead City, North Carolina
Akron, Ohio
Antwerp, Ohio
Cincinnati, Ohio
Defiance, Ohio
Felicity, Ohio
Franklin, Ohio
Granville, Ohio
Mogadore, Ohio
Perrysburg, Ohio
Ravenna, Ohio
Hugo, Oklahoma
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Summerville, Oregon
Johnsonburg, Pennsylvania
Lansdowne, Pennsylvania
Norristown, Pennsylvania
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (2 reports)
West Newton, Pennsylvania
North Augusta, South Carolina
Church Hill, Tennessee
Lafayette, Tennessee
Maryville, Tennessee
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Fort Worth, Texas
Houston, Texas
Palestine, Texas
Plains, Texas
Rowlett, Texas
Portsmouth, Virginia
Richmond, Virginia
Temperanceville, Virginia
Woodbridge, Virginia
Ames Lake, Washington
Bainbridge Island, Washington
East Wenatchee, Washington
Kirkland, Washington
Puyallup, Washington
Vancouver, Washington
Woodland, Washington
Parkersburg, West Virginia
Marion, Wisconsin
Oconomowoc, Wisconsin

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