Divide Hemorocallis (In Pictures)

How to lift and divide hemerocallis

Follow these five quick steps to divide your daylilies and produce new plants.

A table displaying which months are best to sow, plant and harvest.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
To do
To do

Do not To do in January

Do not To do in February

Do To do in March

Do To do in April

Do not To do in May

Do not To do in June

Do not To do in July

Do not To do in August

Do To do in September

Do To do in October

Do not To do in November

Do not To do in December

Dividing summer-flowering perennials helps reinvigorate them and encourage stronger growth.

If left to their own devices, herbaceous plants can form congested clumps after three to four years, resulting in weaker growth and fewer flowers of a poorer quality.

Hemerocallis (daylilies) produce a mass of fibrous roots that can be difficult to separate if the clump is old and your soil is heavy. You may have to slice through the clump with a spade. This might seem drastic but as long as each new section has a few healthy shoots and as much length of root as top growth, it will be ready to grow well.

Follow our easy steps on dividing hemerocallis, below. 

You will need

  • A spade
  • A fork
  • Garden compost or well-rotted manure

Total time:

Step 1

Push a spade deeply into the ground a few inches from a large, congested clump to loosen the soil.


Step 2

Rock the spade gently to loosen the clump and break deep roots, then lift the clump out of the ground with your hands.


Step 3

Select young growth from around the edges of the clump. Try to break off individual crowns by hand, each with roots and shoots.


Step 4

Fork through the soil and add garden compost or well-rotted manure. Replant divisions in groups, firming round each plant.


Step 5

Lightly fork through the soil surface before watering. The new divisions should produce a few blooms this summer.