Bela Lugosi – a clever or meaningful name can really help sell a daylily. I enjoy classic horror movies, and Bela Lugosi’s performance as Count Dracula in the 1931 Universal Studios film [Dracula] is an all-time favorite. This daylily tribute to the silverscreen legend is fitting being that the (slightly ruffled) flower is a phantom-dark purple with a contrasting creamy-gold throat.
I came across the ‘Bela Lugosi’ name on a spreadsheet at a daylily farm, and made a beeline to the referenced garden bed to pique my interest. It was serendipitous that this daylily was the dark purple I was hoping to find that day.
This flower is one of my favorites of all the (30+) daylily cultivars I have in my gardens, and is positioned at a focal point from my main entryway. Fortunately, this daylily has a good bud count and the 6-inch flowers are supported on sturdy stalks. Unlike dracula, the dark-purple color does not succumb to sunlight that easily. Bela Lugosi is approximately 33″, blooms during mid season, and has semi-evergreen foliage. This daylily is highly recommended for any garden, and the moderate difficulty in acquiring it is worth the effort. I have not seen this daylily for sale at local nurseries, but it is available from daylily specialists. Check out your local daylily farm or display garden.
I would like to start a Universal Monsters-theme garden, and I have the following cultivars on my watch list: Wolfman, Frankenstein’s Monster; Dracula’s Mistress; Dracula’s Smile. The open registration for naming daylily cultivars has made such theme-type gardens possible from the thousands of named cultivars on record. Look out for the upcoming Star Wars series! According to the American Hemerocallis Society Online Dayliliy Database, Star Wars character names (e.g. Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker, etc.) have been reserved until 2016. You can search for daylily cultivars here http://www.daylilydatabase.org.