We have a sunny spot with poor soil, not easily accessible to a mower. Several years ago, I scratched shallow holes into the chert, and dropped in five dozen divisions of the shorty daylily Stella de Oro, a reliable repeat bloomer. I top dressed with leaf mold, mulched with two inches of pine straw, applied a light application of time-release balanced fertilizer, and watered deeply. Since that time, we have been rewarded with a month of blooms each May, and good, green foliage for many months.
By June, Stella is exhausted. She has produced dozens of egg yolk yellow blooms per clump, and because she is off the beaten path (literally), I have not spent any time dead heading. Today, I see yellowing foliage and seed pods, maybe a few blooms.
Here’s what I do:
I thoroughly weed the patch.
I string trim off all the daylily foliage. I leave the trimmings where they fall.
I apply a light application of time-release fertilizer.
I mulch with a couple of inches of pine straw.
I water it all in.
In a week, I have fresh, leafy, green daylily ground cover. No more work until next spring, when this gets another application of fertilizer.