Rainbow Rhythm King of the Ages day lily has the gardening world abuzz with anticipation for spring 2021. This is a 38-inch-tall new day lily making its debut and offering the rarest of colors in the garden world. It is a combination of butter yellow, peach and apricot blend. That would be enough to make you scream but consider it also has a burgundy eye and ruffled burgundy margins. I assure you it is coming to The Garden Guy’s house.

This isn’t the only new day lily in the Rainbow Rhythm series as Lake of Fire will also be making its debut and causing your heart to beat wildly with excitement. It is shorter, reaching 2 feet tall but featuring orange, red and apricot orange. Can you only imagine combining either one or both in a cottage garden with Rockin Blue Suede Shoes or Rockin Plain the Blues salvias? This would be a marriage made in garden heaven.

Last year The Garden Guy started growing selections from the Rainbow Rhythm series. These are like the premier day lilies that have achieved large-scale production. I can testify that they will make you feel like a day lily expert and ready to enter competition. A few days ago, I showed my wife a photo I took of Rainbow Rhythm Sound of My Heart and said something to the effect of “Didn’t I take a great photo?” Her pat on the back however went to the day lily when she said, “That is the most beautiful day lily.”

There are now 11 selections to choose from in the Rainbow Rhythm series. I put my six favorites on an Instagram post and my friend Jenny Simpson with Creekside Nursery in Dallas, North Carolina, said she loved Ruby Spider, Primal Scream and Siloam Peony Display. The moral of this story is that you are sure to find sizes, colors and a performance to fit your garden.

Proven Winners promotes these day lilies as attracting pollinators, like bees, butterflies and hummingbirds. I never paid attention until last year when I started growing day lilies. As if they had been paid a PR fee, the Eastern tiger swallowtails feasted on Rainbow Rhythm Orange Smoothie and Tiger Swirl, visiting each and every blossom.

Mentioning Tiger Swirl and the Eastern tiger swallowtails makes me want to tell you what I did. I created a Caribbean cottage spot. This day lily is large with 6½ flowers and tall 32-inch scapes or stalks. As companions I chose Ice Cream Blue Java banana, and Portora elephant ears. It was everything I had hoped for including the butterflies.

These day lilies are easy to grow, requiring at least six hours of direct sunlight each day for best performance. Best results are obtained from raised beds rich in organic matter. Perhaps you haven’t tried day lilies because the flowers only last a day. Remember, each scape or flower stalk has many buds and these open in a series, giving you beauty for not only days but also weeks and even months as they repeat.

Rainbow Rhythm day lilies could very well make your friends and neighbors jealous and that is OK as you will find yourself out in the garden more and enjoying nature and its beauty like never before. Start sourcing your day lilies now as planting season is just around the corner.

— Norman Winter/Tribune News Service