Today, the rain came. It is monsoon season. Sometimes you get rain, and sometimes it moves right past you. The moisture is good but it may make all hell break loose.
Today, however, the season continued at it’s slow pace. I had two premiers and a ton of fat buds.
Comanche Princess, one of my Ned Roberts spiders bloomed for the first time this season. She always looks like she is doing somersaults to me.
To go along with the theme of a Comanche Princess, Wild Horses also made a premiere today. I actually googled both names together and got a lot of photos of Native Americans and their ponies.
Today’s boutique is dedicated to my beloved but estranged daughter, Erica. We haven’t spoken in 25 years or so. Today is her birthday. I hope she is safe, healthy, happy, and at peace. Happy birthday. I’m proud of you.
Indian Giver was a bonus plant I got probably 6 years ago. It had water issues the first couple of years, both loves being in a buried pot. It was a delight when it finally bloomed. I love the purple with white edges. I wouldn’t call it a mini, but it’s a smaller bloom. She had her premiere bloom today.
My other premier bloom was Happy Returns. She is a yellow, fragile Stella de Oro type daylily.
Indian Giver is an old expression for one party thinking they are being given a gift, while the other party thinks it’s a trade. When the second party realizes it isn’t a trade, they take back the “gift.” We would call it scamming these days.
Happy Returns means to wish someone a good day or happy birthday. It’s an expression of hope that the joy will return many times.
The paradox is in the meanings of the names. One is an expression of anger and discontent. The other of goodwill and optimism. It hit me as funny as I posted these to Instagram this morning. Purple and yellow are also opposite colors. I smile at nature’s hidden message.
Premier today that was a total surprise! You see, some of my big pots have 2-3+ different cultivators for decor. One pot originally had one called Dream Souffle- a Home Depot plant. It never bloomed, so I added Yellow Stella and Wineberry Candy. Over the years, I figured it died out as the others took over the pot.
I knew there was a scape with a couple buds. I thought it was Yellow Stella reblooming. What a sweet surprise. I’m sure the crazy heavy monsoon season brought her back. This is one of my best bloom rates and probably the highest bud count ever. PS I’m sure the new drip system and soil helped!
Today, we had a premier. One of the few left to bloom and a new one to my yard this year. Meet Dr Doom. This cultivator is in my family section because my daughter named her dentist Dr Doom – so it is in her honor.
The bloom is a double spider. Unfortunately, between the monsoons and sprinklers, the heavy bloom got waterlogged. The stem was just never able to hold it up right. Maybe the next bloom will look a little more perky.
What is left is Adios Albuquerque, Navajo Curls, and (I think) Painted Petroglyph (but it could be a fan of Purple Corn Dancer. I don’t see any other new spikes other than a couple of yellow trumpet reblooms in-process. I am going to replace a few daylilies in the front yard that just don’t do well in my yard. None of my tigers bloomed this year. Weird. Anyway – starting to plan for next year.
When describing daylilies, most people talk about bloom season, bloom size, scape height, smell, etc. For me, I see places from road trips. I chose many of my daylilies because of their Southwest names, because that is where I go for my road trips.
Last week, I took a road trip through southern Colorado and northern New Mexico. My favorite hybridizer, Ned Roberts, lived in New Mexico and many of his daylilies find their namesakes in that State. When I shop for daylilies, I often get out the Google maps to see what it is named after. And, on this road trip I wanted to go new places and see things that I had never seen before.
I literally drug out the recreation map and looked for interesting places in northern New Mexico – because despite living not too far away, I know little about it (other than the 4-corners area). Anyway, I found something called the Enchanted Circle that sounded interesting and included Taos. The road between Taos and the highway east . . . well, there were two routes. I picked the High Road to Taos because there are two namesake towns on that road: Truchas and Chimayo
The next day, we visited Ghost Ranch, another daylily namesake. I had stopped there about 7 years ago on a road trip because of the daylily. It is a Presbyterian resort that is open to the public for hiking and other activities. It looks like home with the red sandstone. I stop not because I think it is unfamiliar, but because it is a daylily namesake! And, if any of you remember the old movie City Slickers, that is where it was filmed. So, if you have a Ghost Ranch daylily you be like me and think about that movie and the trail boss, Curly.
I have a bunch of premiers since my last post but I am drowning in vacation photos and daylily photos . . . it is going to take a few days to get the blog caught up. So, for tonight, lets look at the name sakes.
That is all for tonight folks. I am trying to stay adjusted to tent times and get to bed earlier at night. I will get caught up with the blog and the new blooms in the next few days. There are several – Skinwalker, Zuni Thunderbird, Desert Icicle, Purple Thunderbird, Cripple Creek, Glen Eyrie, Royal Palace Prince, Pizza Crust , , , I don’t even remember where I left off with the blog. I need to refresh my memory. Stay tuned!
I woke up to over 60 different daylily cultivator blooms today, again. I keep thinking that it is slowing down until I count the shots on my cell phone. So, if between taking the photos, posting the cell shots to Facebook, downloading/editing the camera shots, and blogging, I spend 5 minutes per cultivator (a conservative estimate) . . . well, do the math.
This year is weird because I made significant changes. I put my Southwest garden daylilies all in nicer pots with weed guard underneath (they are buried) to keep tree roots from destroying the pot. When I did that, I refreshed the soil with miracle grow plus their organic soil. It took weeks and a lot were really locked in with tree roots. I also refreshed the soil in all my front path pots – it had really collapsed over time. I added or improved drip systems in all areas that needed it. So, that is the positive. Oh, perhaps the biggest thing of all is that I am semi retired so have way more time to water regularly. My drip systems are not automatic.
On mother nature’s side, we are in a bad drought, again – it was a dry spring with a late, cold spell but little moisture. More like a fan got turned on high. We did have a little monsoon action for the week before the 4th of July. We are still somewhere between severe and extreme drought. And, that is an improvement from last month! It is hot with record breaking temps close to or at 100 degrees.
Put it all together and I have a lot of June bloomers that have scapes but haven’t bloomed yet, but my later bloomers are blooming pretty much on schedule. So, it is a bit of grid lock as the early birds are still in the intersections as the later blooms enter the scene. We are, therefore, still on the Grand Daylily Mesa (vs peak season) with 64 cultivators, with 5 premiers and 3 finales (so net gain of 2 in bloom).
Several of the premiers are Roberts spiders today – which is cool because we had several finales recently in that collection. Here we go!
Finales for today (if I didn’t miss one):
Let’s see what tomorrow brings. Today, I logged about 6 hours on daylily duty. How much time do you spend during peak season?
The end of July lurks, school starts soon . . . why does summer break end halfway through summer? I mean, it has only been 6 weeks from Solstice. I had 18 in bloom this pre-fall day.
My daylilies follow the academic calendar, mostly. My students graduated the end of May and the blooms started 6/6. Now, I have Heirloom Heaven as a premier, a steady and late-blooming mini daylily. I only have a couple premiers left to bloom . . . 3 maybe. IDK, maybe the monsoons will bring some August scapes.
I had a second premier today – Royal Palace Prince. I really don’t remember that one being a late bloomer. But, this bonus daylily is definitely on the late side this year.
What’s left? Some cool Roberts spiders – Purple Thunderbird, Navajo Curls and Purple Corn Dancer all have scapes.
I dread return to work. No windows in my office and a bleak brick building with gravel around it. I will miss my dogs and my yard. I finally decided to spend a few bucks on photo squares of a few of my Roberts daylilies for my office. I need to get some of my summer camping trips, too – next paycheck. It is the best I can do right now.
A spellbinding magic show that brings you delight and pleasure . . . that is what it means to be enchanted. New Mexico is the Land of Enchantment. I am perhaps less enchanted with New Mexico than I am Arizona because Western Colorado has areas that resemble New Mexico.
That said, I am enchanted by my roadtrips through New Mexico. The badlands are beautiful, and the cultural flavor is richer than Colorado – if you are into the Southwest.
Last year, we saw different side of New Mexico at White Sands National Monument. It is a landscape so boring that it is enchanting. Non-colored sand with a few resilient plants poking their heads through.
The hikes are like marching through a very hilly sand box. My cats would likely like it better than my dogs, who considered it way too hot at 85 degrees. I had never seen dunes quite like these ones . . . enchanting.
So, my vicarious roadtrip daylily of the day is Land of Enchantment – another Ned Roberts spider. Last year was her first year to bloom in my yard and by golly, she does look a bit like the New Mexico State flag.
She was one of my early bloomers last year. She doesn’t have scapes yet – but I do have 15 cultivators with their weird claw hands being raised to the heavens in prep for a bloom.
I am nervous because drought years tend to bring early blooming but poor bloom rates. I try to keep up with watering, but I am not the same as a good monsoon. And, the monsoons are too late – it is really the March-May water that matters.
I did put in a new drip system out in the walkway garden and the plants are bigger. So, I guess we will wait to see how enchanting this summer is in the garden. 2020 has brought my 65th birthday, a dead furnace, a broken sewer mainline and COVID-19. I could use a little enchantment.
Today, we were supposed to get a lot of rain. Maybe flash floods. I wasn’t sure I would get any work done in the yard on split-shift, but I worked outside the whole afternoon. More on that in a minute.
Today brought 2 new blooms. Royal Palace Prince was a bonus plant a couple years ago. It has done better than some of the purchased plants. It reminds me of Pick of the Litter.
The second new face for the year is Apache Uprising. It is the second year for this one. I like the red. It reminds me of Baja a little.
I also like this photo of some of my last near blues today – Blue Beat, The Colorado Kid, and Bluegrass Music.
I don’t know about a later peak this year. Bud counts down and buds dropping. March was warmer than April. And, we had the late May snow storm . . . then no rain. Last year was better in the front garden.
I feel like I am freeing hostages. Daylilies that are not flourishing, but could under different circumstances. Buried pots in order for several in the front garden. Today, Catherine Irene and Happy Happy. Neither has ever bloomed here, and this is going on 3 years. Others that need a transplant include Alabama Jubilee, Coburg Fright Wig, Navajo Blanket, Primal Scream, Lacy Doily, and Heavenly Curls. All have had either extremely low bloom this year or have never bloomed.
When I dug up the two today, I was amazed at the other roots that were woven in with theirs. And, in one case, an ant hill. The whole front garden looks so dry. I have the sprinkler on daily. I need to get a sprinkler hose or something. I wonder if eventually, all 100 plus of my in-ground daylilies will be in buried pots. That makes me tired to think about it . . . but it worked well for the veggies. Come on monsoons. Where are you?