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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Poplarville, Mississippi » Southern Horticultural Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #171021


item Fain, Glenn

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/1/2004
Publication Date: 10/7/2004
Citation: Pollard, A., Coggins, P., Coker, C.H., Fain, G.B., Knight, P.R. 2004. Sensory evaluation of edible daylillies (hemerocallis). Meeting Abstract, pg.15.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: All parts of the daylily (Hemerocallis sp.) are edible. Flowers can be chopped into green salads, eaten as a garnish, or deep-fried. Objectives of this project were to determine if daylily flower color or cultivar influences taste. Twenty-five daylily cultivars were established in blocks of 25 plants per cultivar in a field planting at the South Mississippi Branch Experiment Station (USDA Zone 8b) during the summer of 2002. No chemicals were applied. Multiple blooms from 15 daylily cultivars were harvested during the early morning on June 19, 2003. These 15 cultivars had sufficient flowers for sampling. Flowers were transported to Starkville, MS in a cooler where they were evaluated the same day at the Garrison Sensory Evaluation Laboratory. Each panelist received 15 different daylily blooms on separate coded plates and water to rinse between each sample. Panelists were instructed to rank the lilies from most to least preferred and provide additional comments. 'Rosie Meyer', a red flower, was the most preferred daylily. Panelist comments included the following: vegetable-like, peppery light mild, sweet, slight peach flavor, and celery-like. 'Lavender Doll', 'Joan Senior', and 'Aztec Gold' were ranked in the next tier and were 2nd, 3rd, and 4th, respectively. Comments about 'Lavender Doll', a lavender flower, included the following: most salad-like, tastes like a fig, good, pepper, earthy. Comments about ' Joan Senior', a cream flower, consisted of the flower being sweet, velvety, slight throat burn, bland, or grassy. 'Aztec Gold', a gold flower, reportedly tasted mild with a lettuce note, was crunchy, slick, bland, plain, slightly earthy, or burned. 'Bonanza' and 'Border Baby' ranked 14th and 15th, respectively. Panelists reported that 'Bonanza', a gold flower, had a throat burn, was bitter, had a bad off flavor, or was like dirty lettuce. Panelists felt that 'Border Baby', a yellow flower, tasted velvety, green, lettuce-like, bitter or was slick to the tongue. It appears that daylily taste is related to cultivar more than flower color. 'Rosie Meyer', a red lily, was most preferred. However, another red lily, 'Along the Way', ranked much lower. Two yellow lilies, 'Border Baby' and 'Bonanza' were rated lowest, but another yellow lily, 'Aztec Gold', rated much higher. Overall, panelists were pleased with the taste of daylilies in general. Food professionals are very interested in working with daylilies as both a garnish and ingredient. It appears that daylilies may be a viable niche edible crop for ornamental producers.