Sunday, January 27, 2013

Dan Robarts, Part 2!

     A lot of you enjoyed the Dan Robarts write up so much that I thought I would include a second write up, since there were still a lot of daylily photos I wanted to share and there was some things about Dan that I forgot to include. 
I have to put in my disclaimer again and that is that ALL OF DAN'S PHOTOS ARE COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL AND REPRODUCTION WITHOUT WRITTEN CONSENT IS PROHIBITED. (If you would like to contact Dan Robarts regarding his photos, you can email him at
     So, let's start out with when Dan started hybridizing, which was in the late 90's.  His first seedling to ever bloom was a cross of El Desperado X Strawberry Candy. He said it had only 4 buds.  Boy if I could have shown Dan a picture of the first seedling I ever bloomed.  It looked like it fell off the top of the ugly tree and hit every branch coming down.  I asked Dan what other hybridizers influenced him and his reply was of course Steve Moldovan and Roy Woodhall, but he also included Karol Emmerich, Curt Hanson, Melanie Mason, Pat Stamile, and Dan Trimmer.  I asked Dan what some of his favorite daylilies were and they fell into two categories, favorite garden plants, which were Moldovan red/cherry blends, Widows Walk, and Ron Valente. The other category was favorite breeders, which were Vertical Horizon (Moldovan),Reach for the sky (Brooker), Arnold's Daughter (Korth), and Nick of Time (Hanson). Dan goes on to say that even though he is working on his own lines now, he likes to go back to these daylilies to breed with time and again. Dan is also concentrating on diploid lines as well. 
     I asked him about his experiences with breeding in the greenhouse and Dan said that greenhouses can be lovely places for hybridizing with the ability to control temperature, humidity, sunlight, etc. etc. In these optimal conditions he said that there's better seed set with more pods, and seeds per pod.  Dan said the nice thing about working at the OSU greenhouse was there were two full time greenhouse managers that were in charge of pest management as well as a rotation of student workers.  Dan said that insects did pop up such as aphids and spider mites, and that plants were treated with organic oil solutions and beneficial mites wherever possible. 
     Dan went on to say that he wants to promote and breed with other perennials in the future, primarily herbaceous perennials such as Hosta, Peonies, and spring ephemerals including Viola, Hepatica, Dicentra, and Trillium. 
     If you would like to see more pictures of Dan Robart's daylily seedlings you can find him on Facebook, or email him and I'm sure he would be happy to talk about his daylilies.  All I can say is I really enjoy talking to Dan when I get the chance and look forward to his daylily intros in the years to come.  I hope you enjoyed these photos of Dan's seedlings today.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

My friend Dan Robarts, pattern hybridizing superstar!

     Before I begin writing about my fellow hybridizer and friend Dan Robarts, I have to post something very important in regard to Dan's photos which he has graciously shared with me and that is:

All of Dan's photos are COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL AND REPRODUCTION WITHOUT WRITTEN CONSENT IS PROHIBITED.  (If you would like to contact Dan Robarts regarding his daylily photos you can email him at

     I think I first met Dan at Roy Woodhall"s 3 or 4 summers ago.  I remember Roy was trying to get some increase on some of Steve Moldovan's newest intros.  Dan was at grad school down at Ohio State University and he would take those daylilies down to the Ohio State greenhouse over the winter.  Dan would also help a group of  New Englanders (that included Bill Chambers and Carl Harmon) help clear out old seedlings at Moldovan gardens.  I did that work one summer with Bill Chambers and Mike Holmes, but the real reward wasn't the satisfaction of doing the work, it was being able to talk with Roy Woodhall and Steve Moldovan about the daylily world.  So, some of you probably want to know some more about Dan Robarts and get a little background information and I was fortunate enough to get some from Dan last week.
     Dan was born in 1980 in St. Johnsbury, Vermont.  He then grew up in Lancaster, New Hampshire.  From 1996 until 2000 Dan had a landscape/nursery job in high school where his interest in horticulture, plant propagation, and daylilies began to grow.  From 2000 till 2004 he went to Bates college in Lewiston, Maine.  From college he worked a few years at Boston University where he met Bill Chambers and Carl Harmon.  That's where the Ohio connection started where they would travel each summer to work at Moldovan gardens.  Dan then went to Ohio State from 2006 till present to go to grad school.  In our most recent correspondence, Dan says that Steve Moldovan's true passion was for patterned daylilies, and Dan has made it his mission to continue his lines from his more recently released intros, most specifically Vertical Horizon, which was introduced by Steve in 2006. 
     The photographs that I am sharing with you today are some of Dan's most recent seedlings.  I'll leave it up to Dan if he would like to share his pedigrees with you.  I'm pretty sure he will be introducing some of these daylilies in the years to come, so you are getting a sneak preview of what is to come.Some of Dan's favorite daylilies to cross with include Steve Moldovan's Vertical Horizon, Courage to Change, Piece of sky, and Digital Imagery.  Dan also likes Gerda Brooker's Reach for the sky, and Curt Hanson's Point of Divergence.  The neat thing about having Dan as a friend is I am working with some of the same daylilies and I enjoy hearing his take on what's working and what's not.  I hope you enjoy seeing Dan's daylilies today and I hope this makes your winter a little easier to take.  Temps are suppose to get down to single digits this week.  Bundle up!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Dave Mussar's new introductions

     One thing I like to do with my blog is use it to bring any newly introduced daylilies to your attention.  Recently I was looking on the lily auction and saw that Dave Mussar from Guelph Ontario, Canada was introducing some really cool daylilies.  The one that caught my attention is the one that he is naming after his mother, Rosemary Mussar.  I have featured photographs at the top of the page that Dave has shared with me.  All I ask of my fellow daylily lovers is to not re post any of these photographs without Dave's permission.  The cross for Rosemary Mussar is Bryan Culver's Rose Electra X Brother Charles Reckamp's, Heavenly Pastel.  What a beautiful blend of colors!  Nice job Dave! 
     Dave says on his website that he has been hybridizing for 13 years and his original goal was to create a spotted daylily.  Well it looks like after all that hard work Dave has achieved that goal, and that is the other daylily I am featuring today, Spots before my eyes. (photo at the bottom of the page.) The cross for Spots before my eyes is Steve Moldovan's Seurat X David Kirchhoff's Goldmist Red.  Both of these daylilies along with several other introductions can be viewed on Dave's website which is  Hope you enjoyed these daylilies and I hope everyone is doing well.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Ohio, January 2013.....brrrrrr!!!!

     Happy new year to all my daylily friends this fine January day.  The holidays came and went in a blur and I don't know about you, but I am a creature of habit and love my routine, so I am glad that the holidays are behind us.  We have had three snow events in the past two weeks here in Ohio which is fairly normal for this time of the year.  Somehow I got everything I wanted to get done before the ground froze and got covered with snow.  Take a look at the top picture and you can see the front of my house after about 15 inches of snow has fallen.  The photo below it is of my Blazer and my Honda in the back of the driveway.  Gives you an idea of how much snow has fallen.  The photos at the bottom of the page are of the daylily seedlings I have in the garage.  I keep some seedlings in containers in the garage over the winter, but this winter I have had voles digging up the dirt and actually killing a few seedlings.  The top picture shows the seedlings before temps really dropped, and the very bottom picture shows the seedlings now, where we have had temps in the single digits over night.  They literally almost folded over.  All daylilies that were dormants have gone fully dormant at this point.  Any rust that I saw on the foliage is completely dead.  I love that winter kills the rust.  Anyway, I hope to highlight some blooms from the past season in the coming weeks and get back to writing some each Sunday, so I hope you readers check back in to see some cool stuff.  We all need some color to brighten a rather dreary season.  Happy new year to all of you and your families!