Common orange day lilies: These are weeds — or are they? You will hardly notice that the flowers last only a day because of the profusion of buds that follow each day. Day lilies have literally no preference for growth. You will find them from the cold regions of Canada to the warm south of Florida, or in the high altitudes of the Pacific Northwest. Our acid soil accentuates the color, making the oranges particularly strong, while the alkaline soil of Texas causes the color to be slightly less intense — but they grow anywhere. The thick roots multiply with ease. After a year or two in the garden, large clumps of foliage become established, making them an ideal foundation planting as well as a regular in the perennial border.
This week’s dirt
A warning: Since so many “weeds” have been embraced by pharmaceutical companies, there is the temptation to try some of these old-time remedies. We never recommend that you grow these or any other medicinal plants or mushrooms for anything except garden appeal, unless you are sure of what you are doing.
North Shore Gardener by Barbara Barger of Beverly is a feature of Friday’s Lifestyles section. Reach Barbara by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or write to her c/o The Salem News, 32 Dunham Road, Beverly, MA 01915. Previous North Shore Gardener columns can be found at www.nsgardener.com.