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Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Try Edible Daylilies at New Hope Gardens Open Day

Think you’re a foodie? Have you tasted a daylily yet? Daylilies are an easy to grow perennial, require minimal maintenance and produce blooms in a wide range of shapes and colours! 

Esther Cooper-Wood has a passion for growing edible flowers and getting more people eating them
Esther Cooper-Wood has a passion for growing edible flowers and getting more people eating them

With the word lily in its name, a daylily is often mistaken as a lily! A daylily (hemerocallis) has edible flowers whereas a lily (lilium) is not edible. 

Now you can try them yourself at open days run by New Hope Gardens in Colebatch on 24/25 July, 31 July/1 August and 7/8 August, 12noon to 5pm.  Entry is free and there is a pop-up café serving delicious homemade cakes, traybakes, soft and hot drinks. 

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New Hope Gardens is one of only a handful of daylily specialists in the UK. American owner Mark Zenick has been growing them for the last 30 years, first in Western Massachusetts and for the last five years at Colebatch Farm, near Bishops Castle.

Helping him this year and taking over the care of the daylilies in the Autumn when Mark retires is Esther Cooper-Wood, who also works at nearby market garden Little Woodbatch and has a passion for growing edible flowers and getting more people eating them.

Believe it or not, there are more than 70,000 registered varieties of daylily and while they are easy to grow they are still relatively unknown in the UK. There will certainly make a huge impression in the garden and on any plate.  With a similar flavour to lettuce they would look spectacular in any salad.

They get their name as each daylily blossom lasts only a day (the Greek word Hemerocallis, means “beauty for a day”), although the many stems means they can produce a succession of blooms for a month or more.  At New Hope Gardens they grow 200 varieties, ensuring a riot of colour from June into September and they are at their best now. 

At New Hope Gardens the daylilies are field grown and can be shipped around the UK, the perfect perennial, they will bring joy year on year. For more information see their website http://www.newhopegardens.com or their Instagram @newhopedaylilies 

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