The daylily (hemerocallis) is a perennial flowering plant, popular in southern gardens. They range in height from 8 inches to 5 feet and bloom in a variety of shapes and colors. Alabama gardeners appreciate the daylily for its ability to adapt to the hot, muggy summers, demand little care and yet continue to bloom profusely. In most areas of Alabama you can plant the daylily year-round. In the northern plateau, plant in spring.
Determine where you will plant the daylily. You will need a location that receives either full sun all day or afternoon shade. This usually implies a mostly open east, west, or south exposure. According to horticulturists with the University of Alabama extension, pastel colored daylilies need more sun and the varieties with dark-colored flowers may need afternoon shade to protect them from scald.
Amend the soil in the daylily bed by using the garden fork to work 3 inches of compost into the top 8 inches of soil.
Obtain a soil pH analysis four weeks after amending the soil by delivering or mailing a soil sample to your county Alabama cooperative extension office.
Add 2 lbs. of 13-13-13 fertilizer per 100 square feet of planting area and the amendments suggested by the results of the pH test. Mix these materials into the soil to a depth of 8 inches.
Dig a planting hole twice the width of the pot in which the daylily is growing. The depth should be 1/2 inch shallower so that the daylily will sit just slightly higher than it did in the nursery pot. Remove the daylily from the pot, place the roots in the hole and cover them with soil. Use your fingers to work the soil in around the roots. Finish filling the hole with soil and use your hands to firm the soil around the base of the daylily.
Water the daylily until the soil is saturated and water puddles at its base. When the water drains, add a 4-inch layer of mulch, 2 inches away from the base of the plant, extending 2 feet in all directions. Mulch will help protect the roots of the plant from drying in theheat of the Alabama summer.