I thought today would be a good day to highlight two very impressive blue eyed daylilies. We'll start with Kelly Mitchell's Dan Mack Mitchell, named for his father. Kelly says in his description that Dan Mack Mitchell is the creme de la creme of his blue eyed and edged flowers. The two photographs above are of Dan Mack Mitchell, taken in my garden this past year. Kelly goes on to say that he believes Dan Mack Mitchell expands the gene pool for blue breeding in large Tet. flowers as it comes from lines that do not include Tet. Lavender Blue Baby in the parentage. The cross for Dan Mack Mitchell is [(Ginny Mitchell X Seedling) X (Ginny Mitchell X Vanilla Lace)]. Introduced in 2009, it was very pollen fertile for me, and Kelly says that pods are moderately easy. I am excited to see what results I get from my crosses.
The second daylily I would like to feature is Paul Aucoin, introduced by Linda Agin in 2009. I was fortunate to buy a plant of Paul Aucoin from Barbara Burkhart and with the help of Linda's husband, Alan Sr., I received my plant in the spring of 2010. Let me say both Alan Sr. and Barbara were very helpful in my purchase of Paul Aucoin. If memory serves, Barbara said it was the last plant of Paul Aucoin sold. It took one year to settle into it's new northern Ohio home, but this year it went to town. I was very impressed by Paul Aucoin's plant habit. Nicely branched and it was very easy to set pods on. In the spring 2009 AHS journal Oliver Billingslea wrote a very nice article on Linda Agin's hybridizing and in it he says that in Linda's bluish eyes program, she was using the daylily Paul Aucoin. It's no suprise, the daylily Paul Aucoin was very impressive in my garden this year. I have two photographs featured below. If you have a desire to buy Paul Aucoin I see it frequently available on the lily auction and I know of several sellers that have it. These two blue eyed daylilies were some of my favorites this year. I hope you enjoy the photographs.
One of the more exciting things for a daylily hybridizer is having a daylily delivered in spring, seeing it throw up a scape, and if the bloom looks as good as you'd hoped, you get to use the pollen and put it on your favorite daylilies. That was the case with Shirley Farmer's Shabby Chic this year. Not an easy daylily to find since it was just introduced in 2010, I was lucky enough to buy a fan for a pretty hefty price on the lily auction. I had read a lot about the daylily on Mike Holmes blog, so I was excited to purchase it in December of 2010. Now I would say when you get a single fan of something, the chances it will scape in the first year are pretty slim, but in mid July Shabby Chic started blooming for me. Boy was this daylily easy to set pods on. I might also add that it's pollen is very fertile as well. All the photos below and above were taken in my garden this year.
The cross for Shabby Chic is ((Forestlake Ragamuffin SIB X Enchanted April)(Angels Smile X Idas Magic)X Forestlake Ragamuffin). Introduced by Shirley Farmer's daughter Rebecca Stegall in 2010, it's parentage is interesting in the respect that Shabby Chic has Forestlake Ragamuffin's sib in the cross. There are not too many daylilies that possess that parentage and for me it is exciting to get to use such genetics in my hybridizing. To quote Dave Mussar from Mike Holmes blog, Dave says, "Shabby Chic has a double dose of Reckamp breeding in it, with the cross from Enchanted April being (Techny Peach Lace X Wedding Band)."
"Shabby Chic also throws green teeth," as mentioned by John Benz on Mike Holmes blog. Both Mike Holmes and John Benz have a Shirley Farmer seedling called "Shirley's Green Teeth," which is a green toothy seedling out of Shabby Chic.
Shirley Farmer was a retired school teacher that hybridized in Bellbrook, Ohio. She and her daughter Rebecca co owned a nursery called Serendipity Gardens. Shirley was also responsible for starting the Midwest daylily hybridizer's meeting, which I would like to attend in the future, if I can find some time away from my busy work schedule. The next meeting of the Shirley Farmer Midwest Daylily Hybridizers is March 10th, 2012. For more information you can contact Sandy Holmes at firstname.lastname@example.org, or log onto the Region 2 daylily website.
I never had the good fortune of meeting Shirley Farmer, but it is quite an honor to grow one of her favorite daylilies. I should also mention according to it's description that Shabby Chic puts teeth on first generation kids and is a strong dormant producer. A must for anyone hybridizing teeth.
Back in 2009, the big national convention was down in Florida and my wife and I wanted to try and get to as many daylily gardens as we could. Nicole Harry was one of the newer hybridizers that had some introductions of interest to me, so we had the good fortune to see her daylilies and meet Nicole one Saturday morning. Of the many daylilies I liked, the one that stood out that day was a seedling simply entitled A-6. It really blew me away. Such a nice dark rich color with some very prominent teeth. The photograph at the top of the page was taken the day we visited. That following fall, Nicole introduced seedling A-6, now known as Black Tie Affair. If you go to Nicole's website at http://www.nicolesdaylilies.com/, you can find Black Tie Affair listed under the fall 2009 intros. In Nicole's description of Black Tie Affair, she says it was the number one hit of the 2009 National Convention, and if she had it potted up ready to sell, she probably would have sold out. I feel fortunate I was able to buy Black Tie Affair the following spring and it has done quite well for me. I have featured two photographs taken in my garden this year at the bottom of the page. Black Tie Affair is from a cross of Mort Morss X In Cahoots. One other thing I'd like to point out is her 2012 introduction, Bright in the night is out of Black Tie Affair. If you are down in the heart of Florida, don't miss out on seeing Nicole Harry Devito's daylily garden.
Usually during the winter, I spend a lot of time perusing hybridizer's websites and the Lily auction, trying to figure out which daylilies I'd like to buy to add to my collection. I don't have an unlimited budget and usually depend on my pizza delivery tips to buy new daylilies. Being a landscaper during the summer, I depend on delivering pizzas part time to pick up the slack in the winter and help pay the bills. It has worked quite well for about 25 years. With limited space in my yard, I find myself trying to pick only the best hybridizing daylilies in recent years, daylilies that hybridizers consider their best parents.
After reading some articles in the AHS journal written by Karol Emmerich a few years back,
I started emailing Karol asking her about her hybridizing. She has been very kind in sharing
information about her daylilies and hybridizing in general. I have never met Karol in person, but hope
to in the years to come. (It is always hard to find time to get around and see every daylily nursery, but
I do my best.) The two daylilies I wanted to feature today are Karol's Gnashing of the teeth, and her Desire of nations. It was so exciting to see Gnashing bloom for the first time in my garden this year. I took the pollen and spread it all over the place. I have two photographs at the top of this page of Gnashing of the teeth, taken in my garden this year. Karol also suggested her daylily Desire of nations which is featured at the bottom of this page. She said it is a powerful hybridizing tool, and I didn't hesitate to cover it with pods, and spread it's pollen around the yard as well. Obviously it is gonna be a couple years before I will see my results, but it will be exciting to see these seedlings bloom. If you would like to see some of Karol's seedlings from these daylilies, log on to http://www.springwoodgardens.com/. Karol also writes a blog which you can access through the Region 2 daylily website where she details her work and shows pictures of her new seedlings. I look forward to growing more of Karol's daylilies in the years to come.
Since I am writing about daylilies that I liked in my own garden this past season, I wanted to start out with a really nice red tet. from Dale Hensley introduced in 2011, called Heartless. In his description, Dale calls Heartless a white based red, which is what I feel separates it from the other reds in my garden. Dale goes on to say, "This one will stop you dead in your tracks. Simply unforgettable."
This is one of those daylilies you can see from a distance, a trait I look for in daylilies. The cross that produced Heartless is [(Lillian Kane X Season Finale)X Servando]. Heartless is a 6.5" flower that sits a top of a 40" scape, and is dormant. Both the top and bottom photos were taken in my garden this past year. Definitely a red everyone should have!