64 photos

Lilies in the Field

Visiting Oakes Daylilies of Corryton, TN

This gallery began with a visit to the Oakes Garden in Corryton on the second day of their annual Daylily Festival, June 26th. I wasn’t expecting hundreds of varieties—they say they have 1,500 different types of lilies-- and such intense color.

That day was scalding hot, however, with bright, high-contrast sunlight. With permission from the management, I returned before sunrise on two mornings. Each day, as the fields began to light up with the dawn, I moved to catch the lilies in different light circumstances. If you’ve only seen day lilies in bright sunlight, you’ve missed the real show. Their colors are far more vibrant in that soft, first morning light. And with some varieties, especially the dark ones with very light centers, there is an incredible few minutes if the sun’s ray’s can catch them at a very slight angle to the ground, lighting the backs of the lilies but leaving the petals dark. Then the colors are absolutely on fire. Those backlit images you see here are not doctored with post-processing; that’s exactly what the lilies look like when they’re “turned neon” by low slanting rays of light.

On the third day, in near darkness of pre dawn, I discovered an all-night visitor to one yellow day lily. You’ll see him in the gallery.

Please view these using the slideshow for the best background and by far the best resolution.

Here is the Oakes website:

http://www.oakesdaylilies.com/