Hostas, Baby

It’s been quite the spring and summer for my hostas.

Hostas in the Lower Garden

Lucy Vitols sits right next to my back steps. I love the deeply textured leaves.
Though hard to see, there are three Halcyon hostas at the top of this picture.  This H. tardiana cultivar maintains its rich blue color all summer. It’s leaves are quite sturdy. It sits outside my kitchen door near the Lucy Vitols. In front of it is a Francee that seems very happy in this location that receives a nice mixture of sun in the morning and shade in the afternoon.
The champ of the season, hosta seboldiana Elegans, is threatening to take over the universe. It’s been in this spot for five years and was even thinned last year.
The large hosta to the right is Abiqua Drinking Gourd. It’s large blue leaves form a cup that can actually hold water. In the middle are some pots that I take to the farmers market. But behind those pots is one of my favorites, Stained Glass. It is a sport of Guacamole and has shiny leaves and fragrant lavender flowers.  The hosta in the upper left is Singing in the Rain.
The large hosta on the right is Regal Splendor. It has this lovely vase shape is a nice contrast to the hostas around it that grow in a more circular shape. Next to it is Christmas Tree.
On the right is Striptease. I was looking for a hosta that had a bold white stripe down the center and though the stripes haven’t quite shown themselves in the three years that this hosta has been in place, I love the name. I bought it at the same time I bought Hanky Panky. Every garden should have a few lewd plants. The bright green hosta on the left is a mystery.
This blurry image features Krossa Regal and June Fever. I love June Fever’s glossy foliage
This little guy had to have been planted last summer, but the tag isn’t in my book and so it is just another mystery hosta until I find the tag.
Here is another Striptease. It sits next to a division that a friend gave me, but its name is another mystery. It might be Sum and Substance, though the leaves don’t seem quite oval enough. Behind on the right is another mystery that is probably Ryan’s Big One.
In the back behind the Francis Williams and the Endless Summer hydrangea is Sum and Substance, a division I got from a friend.

Front Garden

I like mixing huechera with hostas and the front bed under the magnolia tree is a good example of how these work together. On the right are Francis Williams. These are a sport of Seboldiana Elegans and they were the first hostas I planted. To the left is Guacamole. Tucked behind Guacamole is Golden Tiara. The blue hosta to the left of the huechera is another mystery. I want to say it is Wheaton Blue, but it seems a bit small.
The hosta with the narrow white stripe down the center is Lakeside Beach Captain. Next to it is a recent addition, but, again, I’ve put the tag somewhere and now can’t remember the name. On the far left is an Elegans division from the monster under the cherry tree in the lower garden.
The large hosta on the left is another Francis Williams. In the center is another Lakeside Beach Captain and to the right is another division of Elegans. To the far right is Pineapple Upsidedown Cake. I love its brightness against the blue of the Elegans.

Secret Garden

I think the Secret Garden hosta beds are my favorites, perhaps because I didn’t not initially think I would plant hostas there.  But the spot behind the garage is shady and it became the home for hostas that weren’t thriving in other beds like the Great Expectations and the Francees.  I gradually began adding more varieties, and sprinkled in huecheras for contrast. I decided to put more hostas under the Kousa Dogwood, just to carry the eye across the garden path.

In the foreground are the Great Expectations. I initially planted these in the front garden in full sun. That was a mistake. They much prefer the dabbled light at the far eastern edge of the Secret Garden. I’ve heard that Great Expectations can be tricky to grow, but obviously these are doing well. I don’t give them any extra attention. Next to the Great Expectations are the Francees. They, too, could not take the sun in the Lower Garden. I always think of the word “tailored” when I see these hostas. They are elegant and tidy.
Just west of the Francees is one of my favorites, Stained Glass. This hosta has a fragrant flower and lovely shiny leaves that add a nice contrast to the Krossa Regal behind it.
Meet June, the “parent” of June Fever which lives under the cherry tree in the Lower Garden.  It is a tissue sport of Halcyon.
Looking east in the Secret Garden. The hosta with the light stripe in center June. Behind it is Dream Weaver, a sport of Great Expectations.
Under the Kousa Dogwood is Ghost Spirit. I think I just liked the name. Next to it is Dream Weaver.
On the left is one of my favorites–Stitch in Time. It’s got these wonderful puckery leaves and a bold dark stripe down the center of bright green leaves. Next to it is Allegan Fog. Behind is one of several Dream Weavers. I think I went Dream Weaver crazy at the end of a season a couple years ago.  As I recall they were only $1.  How could I not get them??
These three hostas sit under the eastern edge of the old dogwood.  The two in front are Moerheims. I don’t know what the one behind is. I think I may have thought I was buying three Moerheims. It may be that the one in back doesn’t turn white around the edges because it gets less light.  But it might be Hanky Panky.  I bought it and Striptease together and I don’t see anything in the garden that resembles Hanky Panky.  I really do need to keep track of these things better.
Under the old dogwood on the west is another Dream Weaver and several Patriots that were not thriving in the full sun in the bed under the sun room and dining room. They seem to like the shade under the dogwood far better.

New Additions

K Gardens in Byron Center had an open house yesterday and I stopped by.  I picked up four new hostas and have planted them in the Secret Garden.

Silver Threads and Golden Stitches just seemed like a logical choice to put next to Stitch in Time. They aren’t related, and Silver Threads may be much smaller, but…
I planted, from top, Orange Crush, My Friend Nancy (how could I resist!), and Deep Blue Sea under the lilacs on the north side of the Secret Garden.
This might be a pipevine swallowtail caterpillar. It’s the second one I’ve seen in 24 hours. I know that a female swallowtail seemed to love the dutchman’s pipe this year. I wonder if this is one of her babies.

9 thoughts on “Hostas, Baby

  1. Always a pleasure for me to see shade plantings. What a diverse array of wonderful names and textures (am impressed with how you remember the names). Your hosta collection is a triumph and I too like the mix in with heucheras.

    1. I’ve been way too casual with my hosta knowledge and plan to remedy that. So, I’ll enjoy the “trip” to Mike Shadrack’s garden!! Thank you!

    1. Graceful, I have to laugh because Francis Williams is one of my favs, too. Several weeks ago at our farmers market I mentioned this to a vendor who scoffed at Francis Williams. She said I might as well plant weeds. I was quite offended. In fact, I’d purchased a day lily from her the week before and have yet to plant it. I think I don’t need her negative energy in my garden…

  2. That is quite a collection! You have some beautiful hostas, and they look very happy! It is amazing how many shades and textures that hostas come in. Not too far away from me is Plant Delights Nursery, which specializes in hostas, and I am always amazed at the greenhouses filled with all sorts of hostas.

  3. Nancy, You have a wonderful collection of hostas. H. sieboldiana ‘Elegans’ was the first large hosta I ever saw (on a garden tour), and I fell head over heels in love with it. Unfortunately, I didn’t succeed in getting either it or Frances Williams established in my garden. But I have lots of others that I love, including June, Krossa Regal, and the ancestor of all the vase-shaped hostas, the species H. nigrescens.

    1. Jean, I’m sorry you couldn’t get Elegans or Francis Williams to grow for you. They are related to each other, so maybe there is something in them that dislikes your soil?? Mine is not terrible fertile, and that huge Elegans competes with a large cherry tree for nutrients. But it obviously likes something. 🙂

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