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Al Goldner Daylily Collection

This collection displays many of the daylily (Hemerocallis) hybrids developed by MSU alum Alfred H. Goldner over his long career in the landscape industry. Learn more about the 51 of Goldner's hybrid selections grown in the W.J. Beal Botanical Garden here. Goldner had a passion for daylilies and a breeding philosophy that prioritized durability, beauty, and longevity in the flower’s blooms. Today, 26 of Goldner’s daylily hybrids are registered with the American Hemerocallis Society. A planned gift was made to establish the Jean and Alfred Goldner Endowment in support of the W.J. Beal Botanical Garden.

Al Goldner with dayllies. Photo courtesy of Bob C. Mainfort Jr.

Photo courtesy of Bob C. Mainfort Jr. 

Alfred (Al) H. Goldner (Class of 1941) was an avid horticulturist, breeder of daylilies, and innovator in the landscape industry of Michigan. He and his wife Jean Walsh married in 1941 after meeting as students at Michigan State University. While attending graduate school at Ohio State University, Al was called to service during World War II at the U.S. Army’s Plumbrook Ordnance Work operated by the Trojan Powder Company where he worked as a chemical production foreman. After the war, Al returned to Michigan working as a plant buyer for the J.L. Hudson Department Stores in Detroit. In 1953 he and Jean founded the Goldner-Walsh Nursery in Oakland County, MI. To produce quantities of his hybrids, Al opened his own tissue lab in Howell. Al’s first hybrids were registered with the American Hemerocallis Society in 1979 and as of 2022, 26 of his hybrids have been registered. Read more about Al Goldner's life. 

The database linked to this page includes 116 of Al Goldner's "Hemerocallis selections," as he called his creations. Robert Mainfort (Region 2, American Daylily Society) compiled the database and accompanying photos. Photos of most of the 116 selections can be viewed here. The database is a work in progress that includes all of Goldner's daylilies that are currently available (to the best of our knowledge), as well as some of his garden name plants that do not seem to be in circulation today and may have never left his gardens.

Unfortunately, Goldner registered only 13 cultivars with the American Daylily Society. After his death in 2003, others co-reigstered 13 more. Registration requires hybridizers to provide certain key information about their plants that allows them to be distinguished from other daylilies. Many of the unregistered cultivars in the database have informal "garden names" that Goldner gave them. He recorded brief descriptions of some of these. In other cases, individuals who received garden name plants from Goldner wrote descriptions, sometimes long after the fact.