Day lilies - for many parts of our country, they are an ideal flower for the beginner.
Hardy in a range of approximately zone 3 to zone 9 (sorry, parts of Florida), it doesn't take much more than choosing your color and height and planting them in a sunny spot - and then spending the rest of your busy day on something else. Yes, it's that easy.
These are not true lilies, but who cares? Lots of color combinations. Spider type, striped type, fringed type. Some are fragrant. No pruning needed, no insect pests, few diseases - the only care they will need, besides your love, is making sure they have sufficient water (yes, they will grow in semi-desert areas) and dividing them every few years. Oh yes, fertilize them yearly with some compost. Some people recommend mulching them before their first winter, but in my zone 5, I've never found that to be necessary.
Groundhogs don't bother them (and I should know). They are said to be deer-resistant, but since I don't have much of a deer problem (knock on my garden fence) I can't confirm that.
But what a reward you get for your few minutes of care. These are daylilies from my yards. I got the first three from a plant sale last year at Binghamton, New York's Cutler Botanical Gardens and they are in my front yard. The woman who sold these to us told my spouse and me that these came from a garden in Pennsylvania - and they didn't know the varieties - or, in some cases - even the colors.
The price, though, was right. As it turned out, these are shorter varieties and I may have to replant them in slightly different locations when it's time to divide them.
Yes, in upstate New York, July isn't July without a few - or a lot - of day lilies.
What s your favorite go-to flower?