Hunter's Torch Day Lily Garden

You Can Make Big Bucks in Daylilies

    "You can make from $395 to more than $6,000 per year from a daylily bed that's only 16-feet long and 12-feet wide," says Helen Wheeler Boykin of Hattiesburg, Mississippi.
In a small daylily bed that size, you can plant 79 double-fans in the early spring. The following spring, those daylilies should double, and you can sell the increase (generally one-half your crop) and get your money back in one year's time. When the late spring of the third year of your daylily crop arrives, you once again can sell half your crop and make a profit this time.

    “You'll still have some of your original stock of daylilies from which to grow more daylilies," Boykin emphasizes. "Daylilies can provide a good income as well as color and beauty for your home and garden. An average double-fan daylily will sell for $10. Daylilies that sell for $20 to $40 per double fan are very-good sellers. Too, you can sell quite a few daylilies that cost $40 to $100 per double fan. Some new introductions even go as high as $100/single fan or $300/double fan. Your customer base will determine the price of daylilies you sell the most.

    "I love flowers, and I love people. Too, I use my flowers for therapy because of my rheumatoid arthritis. I work in my garden to keep my joints active. Without my daylilies, my joints will freeze up, and I may even have to be in a wheelchair. The daylilies also provide a supplemental income for me."

   Although Wheeler has a 1/2-acre plot for her garden, she only has planted about 1/4-acre. She adds new beds each year to grow flowers and her profits. To create a new garden spot the quickest and the easiest way, Wheeler asks her friend to bring his small tractor over to her garden and till up a new bed, or you can use a rototiller.

   According to Boykin, “I like the dirt for my daylilies to be like fine snuff, 6- or 8-inches deep. This extremely-loose soil is ideal for planting daylilies. I'll usually add sand, compost and manure to the top of the bed and then have the bed tilled again. Then I'll have a very-loose soil that's highly fertile and that will help me produce the most and the best daylilies I can grow on my property.”

   In a good year, Wheeler's garden will generate $5000 to $20,000 in income, depending on the number of daylilies she sells and the cost of those daylilies.

Lilies For College:

   When Jason Berryhill of Birmingham, Alabama, attended college, he started a daylily garden his freshman year. He learned the income-producing power of investing in daylilies from Boykin by trading his computer knowledge and skills for daylilies.

    "I helped Miss Helen set-up her new computer, got the programs running that she wanted and needed to use and built her lily Webpage for her," Berryhill comments. "In exchange for my time, I bartered for daylilies instead of receiving money. I got my initial stock of daylilies without having to take money out of my pocket, which didn't have any money in it anyway because of school. Planting, growing and selling daylilies is a great way to help pay for college, and my family enjoys the flowers and their colors and names too. My parents have really encouraged me in my daylily business.

    “While in school, I had less than 1/4-acre of raised beds by my family's home. Because each year I bought new daylilies and planted them, by the next year I'd have a large number and a broad variety of daylilies to sell. From what I'd read, studied and learned from the daylily growers I'd talked with, I expected to make from $3,000 to $8,000 a year the first year I sold some of the daylilies I'd been growing.

   “I really enjoy planting, growing and dividing the lilies as well as going out each morning to see which lilies are blooming. I also enjoyed having a part-time income while in school.”

   You may decide to grow daylilies...
* for their lovely colors to brighten-up your garden,
* to earn money for college for yourself or your children or grandchildren and/or
* to earn a second income or a retirement income.

The Magic of Multiplying Daylilies:

    Most daylilies planted in good soils double every year. Some daylilies will more than double each year, depending on climate and soil. Growers raise daylilies from Canada south to Florida, and around the world. Here's how the magic of multiplying daylilies works. For example, in a 12-foot X 16-foot bed, if you plant 79, double-fan daylilies that cost $100/double fan in the spring of year one for a total cost of $7900, then:
   * by the next spring (year two), each double-fan daylily should have become two double fans (four fans), worth $200; if you sell one double fan, you’ll make $100, recoup your original cash investment and still have the original double-fan daylilies to grow and multiply.
   * by the next spring (year three), each double-fan daylily should have become two double fans (four fans), worth $200; if you sell one double fan, you’ll once again make $100 per plant for a $7900 profit for year three. You’ll still have the original double-fan daylilies that will grow and multiply.
   Or, for instance, if you plant 79, double-fan $5 daylilies in the spring of year one, for a total cost of $395 in a 12X16-foot bed, you’ll:
   * have 158 double-fan daylilies by the spring of year two and can sell 79, double-fan daylilies @ $5 each and make $395, which equals your original investment.
   * have 158 double-fan daylilies once more by the spring of year three and can sell 79, double-fan daylilies @ $5 each for a profit of $395.
   By the end of the growing season of year four, you’ll have made a profit of $790, selling $5 daylilies from that 12X16-foot bed and still have 79, $5 double-fan daylilies in the bed that can grow and multiply.

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