The BEST online Hosta nurseries
Well, after discovering this forum and all the wonderful pics about a month ago I've repeatedly gone out and ordered from various Hosta online retailers. The plants are really rolling in now and the difference in quality, size and speed of arrival is significant.
In the conifer forums last year I created lengthy and detailed 'retailer ratings' for the few dozen conifer nursuries I ordered from. I won't do anything like that here, time constraints won't allow loading up hundreds of photos(at least not this year). Also while my budget for Hostas is probably above average, I'm sure there are plenty of forum folks here who order Hostas like men and women possessed. I will however mention when exceptional orders arrive with details and pictures so that if nothing else, others may find these same great businesses and provide some 'stimulus' to the good ol' American economy.
My first, clearly notable retailer was 'Green Mountain Hostas'.
'Green Mountain Hostas' shipped nicely sized, healthy hostas with an enormous inventory to choose from. Many of the hostas had 4-6 leaves already and almost all had what I would call large to large+ root systems. Shipping was exceptional(FREE above $100!) and fast and their prices seem to rate average to slightly below average. That said, for the size hosta they offered(bareroot), the value ratio here is very good. I can easily recommend them to both the weekend gardener or the non-hardcore hosta collector(like me!).
If you only made one Hosta order a year though, so far I can recommend none other then Hallson Gardens. After hearing about them on a previous post, I placed a nice sized order and the plants quickly arrived in a nice sized box. Upon opening it, I found neatly wrapped in paper bags ENORMOUS hostas with their root systems wrapped in wet newspaper. The sheer size of both the root systems and leaves really hasn't had any comparison so far via online retailers. Many of the plants had 5-6 leaves or more, 2-3 eyes and just gigantic, healthy root systems. The size of the hostas required immediate planting - the root systems were so large if I crammed them into 2 or 3 gallon pots, they would still be crowded. Plant after plant was this size, with many of them becoming some of the larger specimens in my young collection. Prices were average to below average in my amatuer opinion and shipping was also top notch(3-5 days from time of order). All in all, it's hard to say better things about a company, Hallson Gardens has really raised my own personal perception of what a good online hosta retailer really can offer. Go find out yourself.
The old picture is worth a thousand words thingy...