Hemerocallis 'Gentle Shepherd'
- Position: full sun
- Soil: fertile, moist, well-drained soil
- Rate of growth: average
- Flowering period: July
- Hardiness: fully hardy
Masses of ivory-white flowers lasting just one day appear continuously in midsummer on slender, upright stems. In mild areas it is semi-evergreen and forms large clumps of strap-like leaves, valuable for suppressing weeds and disguising the dying foliage of spring-flowering bulbs. This elegant daylily looks gorgeous planted in drifts in a sunny mixed or herbaceous border, or beside a pond or water feature. Like most hemerocallis, it is robust and easy to grow, provided you follow the tips below.
- Garden care: The Greek term 'hemerocallis' means 'beautiful for a day', and daylilies need regular deadheading to prolong flowering and prevent their unsightly deadheads from dominating the scene. Each stem carries several flowers, so snap off each flower as it fades. When the stem has finished flowering, cut it down to the ground. After the plant has finished flowering altogether, pull out the dead leaves. When the foliage is looking tatty, cut it down to the ground and fresh new growth will appear. Lift and divide every three years in spring to keep the rhizomes vigorous and apply a generous 5-7cm (2-3in) mulch of well-rotted garden compost or manure around the base of the plant. Water frequently from spring until the buds appear.
Gardening by the coast offers specific challenges and opportunities. You can take advantage of the mild climate to grow not-so-hardy plants with confidence, but will have to choose them carefully to ensure they can cope with the buffeting winds and salt-Read full article