Free Ebooks

Daylilies (Hemerocallis) are vibrant, low-maintenance plants perfect for office environments. They thrive in diverse conditions, offering long bloom periods and air-purifying benefits.

Daylilies Overview

Scientific name:




Water requirements:


Light requirements:

Direct Sunlight


Air Purifying, Low Maintenance

Table of Contents

Introduction to Daylilies

Daylilies, commonly known and loved as vibrant additions to gardens, belong to the genus Hemerocallis. Despite their name, daylilies are not true lilies; they stem from the family Asphodelaceae, subfamily Hemerocallidaceae. Their ability to thrive in diverse environments combined with minimal care makes them outstanding options for both garden and office settings.

Unique Qualities

Daylilies shine with their resilience and aesthetic appeal. They can adapt to varying soil conditions and are relatively resistant to pests and diseases. Their standout trait is the long bloom period, with some varieties offering blossoms for nearly 75 days.

Why Ideal for the Office

Daylilies earn their keep in office environments for several reasons. Their bright, colourful blooms can add an appealing visual element to workspace decor, creating a more inviting atmosphere. Furthermore, daylilies can improve air quality by removing toxins, contributing to a healthier indoor environment. Their robustness and low maintenance needs make them perfect for busy office settings where plant care might otherwise be neglected.

Bloom Season and Variety of Colors

Daylilies are cherished for their long blooming seasons, which can extend from early spring until the first frost in some regions. Each flower typically lasts only a day, but the plant frequently produces multiple blooms in succession, ensuring ongoing visual interest.

Colour Varieties

The range of colours available in daylilies spans the spectrum from near-whites and pastel hues to bright yellows, oranges, reds, purples, and even near-blues. This wide palette ensures that there’s a daylily to complement virtually any aesthetic preference. The only colours missing are pure white and blue, which remain elusive even to hybridizers.

Light Requirements

Optimal Sunlight

Daylilies thrive best in environments that receive six or more hours of direct sunlight each day. This ensures the maximum production of blooms and vibrant flower colours. Full sun is ideal for daylilies, especially in areas with temperate climates where sunlight isn’t too harsh.

Afternoon Shade

While full sun is recommended, providing some afternoon shade in very hot climates can be beneficial. Intense midday and afternoon sun can cause flower colours to fade. Therefore, incorporating some shade during the hottest part of the day can help maintain the vividness of the blooms. Strategic planning of plant locations or using garden structures to cast shade can be effective.

Partial Shade Conditions

Though daylilies can tolerate partial shade, it is important to note that this may lead to fewer blooms. In shaded areas, daylily flowers tend to reorient themselves towards open sky to maximise light exposure, indicating their preference for more sun. If planting in partial shade, ensure that the area still receives at least 4-6 hours of sunlight per day to prevent a significant reduction in blooming.

Considerations for Office Environments

For indoor daylilies, situating them near windows that receive ample sunlight can simulate the conditions needed for their optimal growth. If natural sunlight is insufficient, supplementing with artificial grow lights can ensure that daylilies get their required light levels.

Watering Needs

Initial Watering for Newly Planted Daylilies

Newly planted daylilies require frequent watering to ensure they establish strong roots. For the first few weeks after planting, water the plants every couple of days. This consistency keeps the root ball and surrounding soil adequately moist without causing soggy conditions, which can lead to root rot and other diseases.

Transitioning to Less Frequent Watering

After the initial few weeks, reduce the frequency to once or twice weekly, depending on rainfall. For the first growing season, this schedule helps the daylilies establish themselves more robustly and ensures they receive the moisture needed to thrive.

Water Requirements for Established Daylilies

One of the standout features of daylilies is their drought tolerance once established. While they can endure dry periods, it is still ideal to provide about an inch of water per week during the growing season. This amount can be supplied through natural rainfall or supplemental irrigation.

Checking for Moisture

To determine if your daylilies need watering, use the finger test—insert your finger into the soil up to the first knuckle. If the soil feels dry, it’s time to water. Be careful to avoid overwatering, which can lead to root rot. Overhead watering should be minimised during bloom to prevent damage to the flowers.

Deep Watering for Optimal Growth

Daylilies benefit most from deep watering, which reaches 8 to 10 inches into the soil, rather than surface watering. This practice encourages deeper root growth and better resilience during dry periods.

Special Care for Potted Daylilies

Potted daylilies require closer attention, particularly during warmer months. Check the soil moisture daily and water as needed to maintain a damp but not soggy soil condition. During cooler months, less frequent watering is necessary.

Avoiding Common Watering Pitfalls

  • Overwatering: Constantly wet soil can cause root rot and other plant diseases. Be especially cautious with newly planted and potted daylilies to avoid this issue.
  • Overhead Watering: Watering from above can damage open blooms, causing them to spot or wilt. It’s best to water at the base of the plant.

Soil and Potting

Daylilies thrive best in well-draining, fertile soil that is high in organic matter. This type of soil ensures that the plants receive adequate nutrients while preventing waterlogging, which can lead to root rot. Before planting daylilies, it’s advisable to amend the soil to create the ideal growing conditions.

Soil Preparation

To enhance soil fertility and structure, incorporate organic matter such as compost or peat moss into the planting area. Mix about 3 inches of compost or well-rotted manure into the top 6 to 8 inches of native soil. This practice not only improves drainage but also enhances nutrient availability.

Potting Mix

For potted daylilies, choose a rich, soilless potting mix that offers excellent drainage. A mix containing components like peat moss, perlite, or vermiculite works well. Ensure that the pots have drainage holes to prevent water accumulation.

Soil pH and Aeration

Daylilies prefer slightly acidic to neutral soil, with a pH ranging from 6.3 to 6.8. If the soil is too acidic, adding lime can help adjust the pH levels. Additionally, daylilies benefit from good soil aeration. Heavy clay soils can be improved by incorporating sand and organic material to enhance their texture and drainage.

Benefits in the Office

Air Purification Abilities

Daylilies can contribute to cleaner office air through natural processes such as photosynthesis and respiration. While conducting photosynthesis, daylilies absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen, enhancing air quality by decreasing pollutant levels. Moreover, their root systems can filter harmful chemicals like formaldehyde, benzene, and carbon monoxide, similar to other well-known air-purifying plants approved by NASA.

Aesthetic Appeal

Daylilies are renowned for their vibrant colours and diverse forms, ranging from yellows and oranges to deep reds and purples. The long-lasting bloom season, extending from late spring through summer, ensures that your office space remains lively and visually stimulating for months. Their bold, star-shaped flowers, paired with the strappy texture of their leaves, create eye-catching displays that can complement any office decor.

Low-Maintenance Nature

Daylilies are incredibly easy to care for, making them ideal for the often busy office environment. They are hardy, drought-tolerant once established, and generally free from severe pest issues. Minimal maintenance such as occasional watering and fertilising, along with dividing overcrowded plants every three to four years, is all that is needed to keep them thriving. This resilience makes daylilies a perfect choice for office settings where time for plant care may be limited.

Additional Office Benefits

  • Employee Well-being: Studies show that the presence of plants in office spaces helps reduce employee stress levels, enhances creativity, and boosts productivity.
  • Sound Dampening: The dense foliage of daylilies can also help dampen office noise, creating a quieter and more peaceful work environment.
  • Versatility: Whether in individual pots at desks or in larger planters around communal areas, daylilies can adapt to various indoor office landscapes.

Common Issues and Solutions

Lack of Sunlight

One of the main issues you might encounter with daylilies is a lack of sunlight, which can result in reduced blooming. Daylilies thrive best when they receive 6 hours or more of direct sunlight a day. If your plants are underperforming, consider relocating them to a sunnier spot or providing artificial light sources.

Too much shade might lead to sparse foliage and fewer flowers. Nearby trees or buildings casting shadows could be the culprits. Regularly assess the light conditions and adjust as necessary to maintain optimal growth for your daylilies.

Overwatering and Poor Drainage

Overwatering is another common problem that can adversely affect daylilies. Excess water can cause the roots to rot, leading to mushy leaves and an overall decline in the plant’s health. Make sure the soil is well-draining and avoid heavy, clay-based soils that retain water.

Typical signs of overwatering include yellowing or wilting leaves and a foul odour due to root rot. To prevent this, water the plants only when necessary, ensuring the soil dries out between watering sessions. A deep watering approximately once a week is usually sufficient, especially for established plants.

Dividing Overcrowded Plants

Daylilies can become overcrowded as they grow, leading to competition for nutrients, reduced blooming, and overall poor health. To rectify this, it’s essential to divide the plants approximately every 3-4 years.

The best times to divide daylilies are in early spring before growth begins or in late fall after the blooming season. This ensures the plants have ample time to recover and establish themselves in their new locations. During division, ensure each section has sufficient roots to promote healthy regrowth.

Fun Facts and Trivia

Not True Lilies

Despite their common name, daylilies aren’t true lilies. They belong to the Hemerocallis genus, rather than to the Lilium genus. The key difference lies in their structure: true lilies grow from bulbs, while daylilies grow from tuberous roots.

Edible and Medicinal Use

Daylilies have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries. They are known to treat various ailments, including fever and headache. The petals are also edible and can be a colourful addition to salads. Additionally, extracts from their flowers are used as blood purifiers in some cultures.

Thousands of Cultivars

There are over 60,000 registered cultivars of daylilies, with new varieties being introduced every year. Whether you prefer something classic like ‘Stella de Oro’ or a newer variant, there’s no shortage of options to add to your collection.


Daylilies are one of the most adaptable plants in the world. They can thrive in a range of USDA zones from 2 through 11, making them incredibly versatile. They handle various soil conditions, from heavy clay to sandy or loamy soils.

Erosion Control

Another practical use for daylilies is erosion control. Their thick roots form an extensive network underground, which helps hold soil in place, especially on slopes or other difficult terrains.

Daylilies (Hemerocallis) are vibrant, low-maintenance plants perfect for office environments. They thrive in diverse conditions, offering long bloom periods and air-purifying benefits.


Embrace the Beauty and Benefits of Daylilies

Daylilies, with their scientific name Hemerocallis, offer a unique combination of beauty and practical benefits that make them ideal for any office environment. They are not only visually appealing with a variety of vibrant colours but also contribute to cleaner indoor air, adding a refreshing touch to your workspace.

Key Points Recap

  • Unique Qualities: Daylilies are adaptable, low-maintenance plants that can thrive in well-draining, fertile soils and under various light conditions. These attributes make them perfect for busy office settings.
  • Light Requirements: For optimal blooming, daylilies need 4-6 hours of direct sunlight daily. Partial shade is acceptable, though it might reduce blooming.
  • Watering Needs: Newly planted daylilies require frequent watering in the initial weeks. Once established, they become drought-tolerant, needing about an inch of water per week.
  • Soil and Potting: Daylilies flourish in well-draining soils rich in organic matter. When potting, ensure the use of a suitable potting mix to maintain good drainage.
  • Office Benefits: Besides their aesthetic value, daylilies help in purifying indoor air and are easy to maintain—ideal for offices.
  • Common Issues: Problems such as reduced blooming, root rot, and overcrowding can be easily mitigated by proper sunlight exposure, watering practices, and periodic plant division.

Incorporate Daylilies into Your Office Space

Daylilies are not just ornamental plants; they are a smart choice for enhancing your office environment. Their adaptability, coupled with their air-purifying and aesthetic benefits, make them a valuable addition to any workspace. For those looking to add a natural, refreshing element to their offices, daylilies are an excellent choice.

Take Action Now

Transform your office space with the vibrant beauty and low-maintenance benefits of daylilies. To get started, consider integrating these versatile plants into your workspace today. For professional assistance, you can contact Aztec Plants for plant hire services and bring a touch of nature to your office environment. 

Share this plant with your friends

Grab a Free Ebook

How Plants Effect Profitability In The Workplace

Enter your details below to receive your free guide.

Specifiers Guide to Interior Planting

Enter your details below to receive your free guide.