St. Francis of Assisi watches over this daylily bed in the Rash garden

Selwyn and Mary Kay Rash, Ellsworth, Iowa
Reviewed by: Le Walls, Brookings, SD

The people of Ellsworth were talking. Many of them knew about this beautiful flower garden before July 2009 but now they will always remember “the day the big tour buses rolled into town and stopped at Mary and Selwyn’s house”.

Ellsworth, north of Ames, is a charming small town that can boast they have a spectacular garden. Now, when friends and relatives come to town, they have something wonderful to show them. With this garden being in a small town, people are more likely to stop by and ask to view their garden and learn more about daylilies.

When our bus arrived at their garden, the clouds disappeared and the sun started to shine on this warm yet cool afternoon. The daylilies put on their Sunday best for us.

I especially enjoyed this garden because it exemplifies a well manicured look with neat rows and perfect spacing. Plants were easily identified with well placed markers, clumps were just the right size as to have enough room for the fans to grow to their full potential, not a weed in sight, and the daylily blossoms were extraordinary.

Many people commented about one particular bed. It was a new bed but there wasn’t a single daylily blooming. So, why did it receive so many positive comments? A red petunia was placed between each plant and those petunias were bloomin’ like crazy. What a good idea to make a new daylily bed look sharp its first year.

When I asked Selwyn how he was introduced to daylilies, he said that he had met Don Lovell at a Master Gardener’s class about six years ago. Selwyn used to be into iris but then Don Lovell gave him several daylilies and soon he was hooked. Selwyn also said his mother had a garden on his boyhood farm.

Selwyn and Mary have lived in their home since 1973. Originally he owned an additional lot to the south but unfortunately he sold it before daylilies came into his life.

Thank you Selwyn and Mary for being gracious hosts. Your garden is spectacular.