Sunday, December 16, 2012

My 2013 introductions are up!

     Just a quick post today.  I have my 2013 introductions up on my website which is  One is already sold out and that one is Magneto, which is featured at the very top of this page.  Right below it is Dr. L.G. Katz, named after my dermatologist.  At the bottom of the page is

 Han Solo, Jack MacRitchie and a nice multiple bloom shot of K.J. MacRitchie.  Hope you enjoy the blooms.  Special thanks goes to my friend, Mike Holmes for his excellent work of putting my website together!
Thanks Mike!!!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Winter's first snow

     Hope you all had a nice Thanksgiving!  I spent Thanksgiving at my wife's families house and boy did they put out a spread.  I also have been busy with the last leaf clean ups this past week, and of course my favorite thing to do in late fall......plant daylily seeds.  Usually I'm planting seeds in 30 to 40 degree temps, with winds gusting so hard it sometimes has blown the seeds right out of my hands.  It's always a last minute rush here because our climate changes so fast in November that sometimes you don't get all your seeds planted in time.  I still have some seeds left to plant, but I was very fortunate this past week.  Temps were in the 50's, it was sunny, and there was no wind.  Almost too nice to believe.  Then of course this weekend everything went back to normal.  It was a lake effect snow event, but fortunately the snowfall was very light. Check out the pictures above and below.  You can see how many crosses I got planted this week.  You'll also notice some of the tags have labels, and some are just written on with permanent marker.  The tags that have labels are recycled tags that I could salvage from seedlings that didn't make the cut.  The ones with marker are brand new and I can get more seeds planted with the brand new tags, but unfortunately it is getting more costly to buy tags these days.  It will be interesting to see how many germinate next spring.
Next week I hope to post some daylily pictures of my 2013 introductions.  I will be introducing 5 daylilies. I have been busy writing the descriptions and emailing the pictures being used.  Hope you all are having a nice weekend.       

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Still working on planting seeds

     Well my friends,...unfortunately last Sunday I had to work at my part time job and I was pretty tired when I came home, so I did not get to write an entry in my blog.  I am still trying to bring my landscaping season to a close, working part time delivering pizzas, and hoping to get my seeds either in the ground and in some containers.  I took a lot of pictures around the yard today so let me share what is going on. Let's start with the very top picture, which is of containers in my garage.  I find that the crosses that are the most important to me do the best started in these containers.  I use a combination of potting soil, some cow manure, and some pebbles at the bottom.  Daylily seeds don't like wet feet, in fact it will kill them.  I've seen some of my friends start ALL their seeds in seed trays, and that may be what's best for their set ups.  I find that with the containers I can get more fertilizer directly into the roots and seedlings grow faster since they are being watered almost daily during the peak of summer.  The photo right below it is of all the seedlings I lined out in the backyard where I shoveled 4 yards of fresh top soil.  They seem to be doing well.  At the bottom of the page you can see a photo of my front yard.  We've probably had about 4 to 5 frosts and the daylilies are starting to lean over some.  The middle picture is of Jack Carpenter's Fire on the Mountain, which appears to be going completely dormant.  The bottom picture is the main area where I plant my seeds.  I try and pick an area that is well drained, that gets sunlight all day, and is easy to access.  This area was perfect.  Believe me, I've had several bad attempts in previous years of locating areas for seeds.  One year I had planted all my seeds out by a barn with no drainage and I swear none of my seeds germinated.  Lesson learned.  Anyway, hope you folks are enjoying the good weather and have a happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

My visit to Moldovan gardens this summer.

     I stopped out to visit Roy Woodhall this past July.  I got to see some of Steve's last seedlings in bloom, which were truly amazing.  Steve made these crosses in July of 2006, the year he passed away.  Roy and a good friend, Wayne L. found a nice spot in the backyard and lined out Steve's last crosses. I saw the blooms last year and was really blown away, and they even looked better this year.  All I have written down are seedling numbers at this point, but I thought I would post what I considered the 4 best blooms.  The one at the very top is out of Digital Imagery, I'm pretty sure.  The toothy one at the bottom is either out of Buzz Saw or See me, feel me, touch me. (the toothy one was my personal favorite.) I hope you enjoy these blooms and hopefully we will see these introduced in the years to come.  Steve and Roy's daylilies continue to amaze me.   By the way, we got hammered with rain everyday last week.  Cleveland lost some power, but it was nothing compared to what happened along the east coast.  Thoughts and prayers go to those folks.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Hurricane Sandy is here to ruin the day.

     Well, if you lived a little further to the west in Detroit or St. Louis, consider yourself lucky.  They are projecting we are suppose to get 4 inches of rain this week.  What makes this weather event even worse is the fact that we have had a wetter than normal fall.  Things have gone from bad to worse and I still haven't finished lining daylilies out or even begun planting seed.  This whole coming week all I'm gonna do is work on tags.  What else can I do?  Rain is forecasted for every day through next Thursday. 

     On to less depressing subject matter.....I thought I would post some pictures of some of my favorite blooms from this past season.  Pictured at the very top is Gaudeamus, a Steve Moldovan daylily introduced in 2009.  Right below it is a seedling of mine out of a cross of Venus Fly Trap X Labyrinth of Solitude.  I'm thinking of introducing it in 2014.  At the bottom of the page are two of my favorite blue eyed daylilies.  The top photo is Persian Art from Carpenter, and the bottom photo is Paul Aucoin from Linda Agin.  Hope you enjoy the pictures.  I'm so tired of all the bad news.  Sometimes it's just easier to change the channel.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The hard work continues.

      Oh, my aching back.  Even though the area I selected for lining out the last of my seedlings from last year is small, it's still some back breaking work.  You'll see at the top of the page where a company called Kurtz brothers delivered 4 yards of their bedding mix top soil.  Once they left, I proceeded to shovel it in the back and some spots out front for 3 to 4 hours.  Then on Thursday, (right after it had rained) I began lining out seedlings.  Man was it muddy.  I had mud stuck to my shoes, my little cart I sit on, and tracked it all over the place.  Today I was able to finish what I started, but in much nicer conditions.  Not nearly as muddy and the sun was out most of the day.  Anyway, I'll let all the photos do the talking tonight as I'm pretty tired from juggling working my landscaping business, some part time pizza delivery, and all the work I put into my daylilies.  It was one of those weeks you'd like to put behind you.  Hope you are all fairing better.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Three toothy beauties and the hardest job of the season.

     Tonight's post may be a little short because of the lack of blooms outside as the bloom season slowly comes to an end.  I was going through all my pictures from the season and found this really cool picture of three toothy daylilies I had brought inside to harvest pollen from.  The daylilies (which are pictured above) are Gaudeamus (Moldovan 09) in the upper left hand corner, Briar Patch (Grace 10) in the upper right hand corner, and Happy Holidays from Mike Holmes in front.  The reason why I wanted to share this photograph is it is such a nice collection of toothy blooms.  I enjoyed using each of these daylilies this season.
      In the photographs below you can see my landscape trailer completely loaded with seedlings I had dug this season.  I had to get the compost pile out of my backyard, which borders on my neighbor's backyard. It was a bit of an eyesore and my neighbor was very understanding and patient with me finding time to remove them.  I have to say this was probably the hardest job I did all season.  I had to hand load all of these daylilies up, and this after it had rained all weekend making the weight of each daylily much heavier.
Slipping in the mud and puddles didn't make things any easier.  I am suppose to get a load of top soil tomorrow and hopefully I will be able to line out the last of the seedlings in the coming weeks.  It's late, but I have no choice.  Hopefully the weather will cooperate.  Anyway, that's this week's installment.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Florence Denny blooms and still gathering seed.

      This past week we had a couple days in the 70's, just warm enough to let a rebloom scape or a first scape come into bloom.  I had planted a single fan of Florence Denny I had won on the lily auction in spring, and due to the warm weather it has increased rather nicely.  Enough to throw up it's first scape.  For those of you who don't know, Florence Denny was introduced by Dan Trimmer in 2011.  The thing that will catch your attention about Florence Denny is it's awesome size, sometimes getting up to 9" across.  You can see the bloom I have photographed has some nice angel wings and ruffles.  Too late to use this year, but I am anxious to cross with it next year.  I've heard it is a good breeder from several sources.  Florence Denny is featured at the top of the page with both photographs.
        I am still gathering seed even though it is nearing the end of the season.  I thought this year was going to be a down year for seed due to the drought, but I look behind me at the drawers I keep my seeds collected in, and I've filled 3 drawers.  Probably 2.5 to be more exact.  Sometimes when I make a cross I only make a couple of seed, but if I really love a certain cross I'll hammer it on every bloom.  Take a look at the bottom two photos.  One is of seed pods I collected from a Steve Moldovan daylily called Mahdi.  Steve Moldovan and Roy Woodhall always praised Mahdi as being a grand parent.  You'll notice all the tags have the initials "C.F."  That stands for Crowning Fire which was introduced by Guy Pierce for Pat Stamile this year.  I was really blown away by Crowning Fire and was always told by Steve and Roy to take red tets. into Mahdi, which was purple.  I've seen some of the kids from those crosses and thought taking Crowning Fire into it made sense.  Below the seed pods, you can see an envelope I am holding that has easily a hundred seed from a cross of Crowning Fire on Curt Hanson's Up on the roof.  If you don't grow either of these daylilies I encourage you to get them.  Excellent daylilies from outstanding hybridizers.  Once again you can see I loved the cross involving Crowning Fire on Up on the roof.  Every pod except two were from that very cross.  I will be excited to see the results of these crosses.  Anyway, it's a rainy, dreary cold day here in Northeast Ohio.  Hope you folks have better weather where you are.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Daylily hybridizing can be hard work at times.

     Sometimes the work involved with daylily hybridizing can be demanding.  I still have some seedlings that need to be lined out.   It's really late in the season and this should have been done weeks ago.  Why didn't I get them lined out?  I ran out of space.  So, I scratched my head....looked around, and figured the backyard was going to get a makeover.  For many years I have kept my oldies, but goodies back there.  They were daylilies that I fell in love with in the beginning of my hybridizing, and while they brought a smile to my face each bloom season, I no longer used them to cross with.  My friend Curt Hanson has said to me many times, "if I'm not using a daylily to hybridize with, then why am I holding on to it?"  Makes a lot of sense.  If you are a hybridizer, space is usually at a premium, and I decided it was time to let go of these daylilies.  I'm sure I will see them again in others gardens, but at the same time it was sort of bittersweet.  It was as if I was saying goodbye to some old friends.  For me daylilies give me that certain lift when it's bloom season that's hard to put into words.  I've had some difficult times in my life and the one constant throughout my 13 years of daylily hybridizing is that there is something special about working with this incredible plant.  Truly a passion for me and it has been a huge blessing in my life.  That said, let me share a few pictures from today's work.  At the very top of the page is a picture of the backyard area I dug to make room for more seedlings. The picture at the bottom of the page is a bunch of blooms of Blue Rhino.  I know Blue Rhino would look much better, but I just had to show the picture because of the scape.  Nice branching.  It's been very cold and rainy lately and the blooms that are out there right now don't look normal.  I'm sure Blue Rhino will look awesome next year.  At the very bottom of the page is our side door garden, planted with a lot of mums.  You know it's the end of the season when you are taking pictures of the mums in bloom.  That's it for this week.  Hope everyone is well.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Variegated daylilies.

     Before I delve into variegated daylilies, let me just say that if you read last week's blog, you read that my wife and I put a bid in on a house in Chesterland which was priced at $66,900.  Well, two other "ALL CASH" investors put bids in as well and the bank will most likely go with them.  This is the reality of real estate these days.  Anyway, let's get into some less depressing subject matter....variegated daylilies.  I grow one variegated daylily, variegated Kwanso. (see image at top of page) I am not able to cross with it, but I like it for the novelty that it is.  The only daylily in my yard that is variegated.....or so I thought.  I have also come across a new daylily intro that is variegated, Identity Crisis introduced by Dan White this year.  It is a nice yellow toothy daylily with variegated foliage.  I became aware of this daylily through the lily auction.  Anyone that knows me, knows that I am a big lily auction follower and my good friend Rich Howard was selling some seeds from Identity Crisis.  His pictures caught my attention.  If you look at the photograph in the middle of the page you can see a picture of the flower of Identity Crisis, and right below it is a scape with some variegated pods that Rich Howard was nice enough to let me share.  Isn't that fascinating?  I haven't emailed Dan White to find out if any of his Identity Crisis seedlings are variegated, but it is exciting to see new developments in daylilies like this.  In my own garden, one of my daylily introductions, which I have not seen variegation in to this point, has thrown up a variegated fan.  It is my 2010 introduction Millennium Falcon. (see picture at the top of the bottom of the page.)  I don't know if this is just an anomaly or if it is going to stay variegated.  Stay tuned, ...I'll let ya know next year.  There is one other daylily that is variegated that I am aware of, but have never seen.  It is Golden Zebra introduced by Malan in 2003. I have put a photograph of Golden Zebra all the way at the bottom of the page.  Isn't it interesting we always look at the daylilies flower first, but now there are more reasons to start noticing the foliage as well.  Hope you enjoyed this week's segment.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

And the hits just keep on coming!

     Well, still enjoying my late season here.  The re bloom this year is probably a result of a very early spring and the daylilies had extra time to get going.  I'm seeing even more scapes coming up.  Don't know if they will make it to their first bloom, but here's hoping. 
     Got a weird situation developing with regards to my home situation.  It would seem a house has come on the market that my wife and I thought was sold, but has come back on with a lower price.  We are making an offer on it tomorrow.  If our offer is accepted, I have the herculean task of trying to move my entire daylily collection to the new house in Chesterland, Ohio, which is about 10 minutes from where I live now.
I'll be closer to my old friend Curt Hanson, and living in a home with more space for my daylilies.  Hopefully things will work out, but you never know in the world of real estate.  Crossing my fingers here. 
       Anyway, let's show you what's going on here.  At the very top of the page there is a picture of some seedlings I've lined out in the front yard.  I have some mature daylilies on either side, but the seedlings would grow in the rows I've planted.  I do have a problem with finding space for things as you can see.  Right below it is a re bloom of Stamile's Fringy.  Multiple blooms on this scape today.  At the top of the bottom of the page is a nice extra late old fashioned orange called Ali Baba.  It usually has masses of orange blooms.  Very dependably extra late.  Below that is a nice re bloom from Larry Grace's Full of Treasure, one of my favorite green edged daylilies.  At the very bottom is a late bloom from Blue Rhino, from Guy Pierce.  I got Blue Rhino as a bonus plant and can't wait to use it next year.  Too late to make crosses at this point since the pods won't ripen in time before the first frost comes and puts an end to the daylilies growth.  Such is life here in Ohio.  Well, it will be an interesting week...that's for sure.  Happy gardening!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

More late season favorites.

      Well, we had a nice weekend with temps in the 60's for a change.  It's been pretty rainy,
 but I think we needed it.  I decided to try and plant seedlings out front and most of the seedlings were planted in containers in the back.  They had gotten pretty big, big in fact that I had some difficulties digging them out of their containers.  I don't use seed trays, rather I just take flower containers similar to those you see around decks.  Flower boxes if you will.  I like how deep they are and the daylilies get to spread their roots out more.  The seedlings were mature single fans...almost ready to throw scapes.  So, I hope to see first year blooms next year in July.  Moving along to our pictures this week. At the very top is a picture of some pumpkins from Sunrise Farms near Burton, Ohio.  Yes, it is getting closer to fall and I thought you might enjoy seeing the colors.  Below it is my compost pile, just chock full of reject seedlings.
  In the middle of the page is the daylily Look Here Mary.  Look Here Mary is a really nice late season daylily whose blooms measure almost 10 inches.  Look Here Mary is a diploid.  At the top of the bottom of the page is a very late gold daylily which is in bloom right now.  I believe the name is August Pioneer, but in case I'm wrong, someone please let me know the correct name.  Right below that is a shot of a great very late daylily apropriately named Late Round.  A nice polychrome tet.  At the very bottom of the page is in my mind the latest daylily every season, Pee Wee's Big Adventure from Curt Hanson.  Pee Wee is a bud builder.  Somehow you think the other lates will outlast Pee Wee, but low and behold Pee Wee will be in bloom at the very end of the season right up to the first frost.  Curt and I have compared notes and Pee Wee's Big Adventure is the champion of the late season.  Hope you all are doing well.

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