By Karin Glendenning
Community News Writer
Scotty Innes learned about raising daylilies from her father, who was a daylily hybridizer and has introduced many varieties. “He started in the late ‘50s, and I was around it a lot,” she said of her first brush with the beautiful flowers.
After retiring from a career as a flight attendant for TWA 16 years ago, she has now established her own daylily farm, Mountaintop Gardens, located off Sawyer Road. “In 1992 I started making crosses of my own,” she said about her efforts at creating new daylilies through hybridizing. Today she sells locally, throughout the country and overseas.
Mrs. Innes is also a member of Email Robin, a group sanctioned by the American Hemerocallis Society that has 1,300 members. “We are into incorporating different plants with daylilies,” she said. “We share information about daylilies primarily, but also get into other things.”
Thus, in addition to fields of daylilies, Mrs. Innes grows lots of hostas and blooming perennials in her yard. She said she especially likes cinnamon ferns. “They can take full sun and quite dry conditions,” she said.
Large boulders with plantings around them lead visitors into several cultivated gardens surrounding the Innes home, including one in front that is enclosed in a weathered fence. Mrs. Innes’s husband, Roy, built an arbor for this area and growing on it are clematis and New Dawn roses. Throughout the yard are beds that showcase not only her daylilies, but her talent for garden design.
A large koi pond in Mrs. Innes’s front yard is surrounded by hostas, a delicately branching Japanese maple, and various specimens of ferns. Growing in the pond are flag iris, which bloomed a bright yellow this spring. Mrs. Innes said she grows the iris because “they keep down the build-up of nitrogen, which is dangerous to the koi.”
Mrs. Innes grows daylilies from seed, raising them in a greenhouse before setting them in her fields. “I probably have about 10,000 seedlings at any given time. I plant about 3,000 each year,” she said.
On the day we visited, Mrs. Innes was sprucing up her garden, readying it for the annual garden tour that follows the Tennessee Valley Daylily Society’s Hemerocallis Show, held last Sunday at Northgate Mall.
Her garden will be open to the public Monday, June 20, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 1629 Sawyer Springs Trail. To visit on other days, call 886-5845. You can also visit her Web site at 222.daylily.net/gardens/mountaintop or e-mail her at email@example.com.
Another Signal garden on the daylily tour is LaVonne Jolley’s Rocky Dell Garden, open also on June 20 from 2 p.m. until dusk at 2705 Wilson Road.
E-mail Karin Glendenning at firstname.lastname@example.org