Daylily '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
Registered or introduced: 1986
» View all varieties of Daylilies


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

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


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

Rockford, 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

Hughesville, Maryland

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

Richmond, Texas

Rowlett, Texas

South Jordan, Utah

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

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 24, 2018, Chaz111 from Rockford, IL wrote:

Daylily 'Happy Returns' does very well in my garden. This plant grow like a weed with many flowers and in this case a weed is a good thing :) I like seeing these planted by road sides, in parks, churches and such knowing this is a rugged,pretty flower that brightens the day. Yes leave room for other flowers and trees to make a healthy habitat but this is a good one to remember to add in it's place.


On Jul 24, 2015, vossner from Richmond, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

I don't do Dor DLs but this was a bonus plant from a vendor and I was in a planting mood, so in the ground it went. The blooms are beautiful and I enjoy the slight green undertone of this yellow flower. Dormants decline and eventually disappear in my z9a garden but I will enjoy this pretty for as long as it is around


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.....


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.


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!


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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

Blooms for long period with many flower scapes.