R. W. Munson, Jr. Award
The R. W. Munson Award was established in 2001 for the most outstanding distinctly patterned daylily. Roswell William “Bill” Munson, Jr., is an AHS icon. At the time of his death in 1999, Bill had won more major awards than any hybridizer in the history of the Society (except for the Stout Medal). Voted by Garden Judges.
(Go to bottom of page for link to spreadsheet with votes by region for all 2020 Cultivar Awards and Runners Up)
2004 TUNE THE HARP Hansen
2003 MYSTICAL RAINBOW Stamile
2002 ETCHED EYES Kaskel
2001 WITCH STITCHERY Morss
The R. W. Munson Award was established in 2001 for the most outstanding distinctly patterned daylily. Roswell William “Bill” Munson, Jr., is an AHS icon. At the time of his death in 1999, Bill had won more major awards than any hybridizer in the history of the Society (except for the Stout Medal).
Bill was born in 1929, in Gainesville, Florida. He received a degree in Architecture from the University of Florida and worked in this field until his retirement in 1980. He became involved with daylilies as a young man, and with his mother Ida Munson, established Wimberlyway Gardens in Gainesville.
He became interested in tetraploid daylilies in the early 1960’s and decided to dedicate himself to the development of what he felt were potentially superior cultivars. This was a risk, because of the deep contention between the dips. vs. the tets. camps in the AHS at the time. However, he and his mother persevered and succeeded in producing 35,000 seeds from induced tetraploids in 1972. From these and others, he built his award-winning tetraploid hybridizing program. He was a primary force in the development and acceptance of tetraploid daylilies.
Besides Bill’s many successes in hybridizing and many awards for individual cultivars, he was a stalwart member of the American Hemerocallis Society, serving as a board member and President. He received both the Society’s highest personal awards, the Bertrand Farr Silver Medal in 1967, and the Helen Field Fischer Gold Medal in 1991.
In 1975, he established the Ida Munson Award for the best double daylily, in honor of his mother, herself a well-known hybridizer whose Hemerocallis ‘Ida’s Magic’ won a Stout Silver Medal in 1991. He later authored a book which was considered by many to be the definitive volume on daylilies: Hemerocallis, The Daylily (Timber Press, 1989)
Courtesy of Betsey Clark and the AHS Archives