A 'White feather hosta' question?

meyermike_1micha(5)May 20, 2012

I ordered a 'white feather hosta' from Hirtz's gardens a couple of weeks ago and it has finally started putting up new growth.

The leaves coming up are a very thick leaf with green with lighter coloring.

I called them and explained this, and they told me that the very first year, it does not grow white leaves. They told me it is common and that I should start getting white leaves once it is established next year.

Has anyone ever heard of this before? I really expected to see white leaves and instead I get green ones.

Thanks so much:-)

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paul_in_mn(4b)

With many hostas that change colors during the season, the leaves after first flush, unfurl much closer to the color of the already changed leaves.

Paul

    Bookmark   May 20, 2012 at 9:21PM
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Gesila(MI Z5)

Mine unfurled white the first year. This year, they looked like they did last year when the white disappeared.

Gesila

    Bookmark   May 20, 2012 at 9:24PM
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i-like-to-grow(6)

White Feather is an undulata. Just like H. Undulata... as the season progresses... the white will turn to green. Its chlorophyll, you know... that thing that makes a plant grow. Generally the first flush of leaves will be the whitest, most of the time pure white, then as the season progresses, the veins will darken to green and the leaves will become misty green to pure green. Sometimes your second flush of leaves will even be pure green. Also, fertilizing the hosta will magnify the greening. I ordered
mine a few years ago as TC, they weren't unfurled at the time... they did unfurl into pure white...
They were beautiful at the time... granted I don't have the biggest collection around... but I do have to say white feather is probably my least favorite... It has been a pain to grow... its a super slug magnet.. ugly for most of the season.. a hard rain will ruin most of the leaves... etc etc... truly a novelty cultivar thats best pampered in a pot...

http://www.hostalibrary.org/wx/whitefeather.html
http://myhostas.be/db/view/White+Feather
John

    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 12:53AM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

You see. Here's the thing everyone.
It' first flush of the season is green! They are saying this is common for s new white feather hosta.
Are they lying to me and sent me a fake?
I bought a white feather and expected its first flush to be white

    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 4:24PM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

You see. Here's the thing everyone.
It' first flush of the season is green! They are saying this is common for s new white feather hosta.
Are they lying to me and sent me a fake?
I bought a white feather and expected its first flush to be white

    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 6:43PM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

I thought of a few more questions?

If it is so hard to please this plant in the ground, exposed to all these bad elements such as slug, cold, and rain, how many prefer to grow these in containers? Is it a better idea? Is there any disadvantage?

    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 9:37PM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

You see. Here's the thing everyone.
It' first flush of the season is green! They are saying this is common for s new white feather hosta.
Are they lying to me and sent me a fake?
I bought a white feather and expected its first flush to be white

    Bookmark   May 22, 2012 at 9:53AM
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paul_in_mn(4b)

Carrying on a conversation with yourself? lol

You see. Here's the thing if I had White Feather I would give you my experience, but I don't. A couple have responded, and since you haven't received the Exact Response you wanted in only a day and a half - perhaps you might be a bit over anxious - give it a week or so and give people a chance to respond. This forum is very active, but most probably don't grow White Feather - that may tell you something.

Paul

    Bookmark   May 22, 2012 at 11:43AM
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Gesila(MI Z5)

This is the only hosta my DH has ever bought on his own. He was so excited to see the white shoots emerging from the pot. I didn't want to burst his bubble and let him know that the white was going to be short lived.

Here's a picture of our's last season when it emerged:

Like I said in an earlier post, it came up green this year. You can tell it's White Feather though, from the white streaks in it's leaves. My DH put it in a pot last year in a prominent spot, but it's slowly worked it's way into the back of the garden.

It is possible that you didn't get a White Feather, I don't think they are lying and have sent you a fake though. Tags do get mixed up.

If you have some white streaking in your leaves, you probably do have a White Feather.

I don't think it's very attractive and the leaves have no substance. As our garden fills up, it will probably be one that we give away.

Gesila

    Bookmark   May 22, 2012 at 11:47AM
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Moccasin(z9aMobileAL)

There is another hosta which has the white between the veins and green veins, and it is Tony Avent's Hosta White Wall Tires. I don't know anything else about it, but it looks nice to me.

Over this last year of reading the forum comments, I've backed off wanting a lot of white in my leaves. They are too much trouble, and I'm not that albescent fixated. I've made some weird (i.e.inappropriate) choices for my garden, and I count it as the price of my education. Then again, I'm really pleased with some of the "bonus" plants chosen for me by the places I order from. Sort of steering me in the right direction, is the way I look at it, and I take heed.

When I get GOOD at this hosta growing, then I might try the whiter leaves. Until then, I can offer no help with their culture.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2012 at 8:50PM
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HostaFever(5)

I had to chime in on this one as H. White Feathers has always been a controversial hosta. When its good it's great...when it's bad, it's really bad! I have had mine in the garden for over 8 years ( picture was taken May 18), I have never moved it ( have taken many divisions), it gets a fair bit of sun and some fertilizer. The leaves are to emerge pure white at the start of the season, then as said earlier they get a misted green. Your plant should emerge white, if it's green now I would return it. This is the one hosta in my garden that is 'high maintenance' out of the 800 I have but for me it is worth the show in the spring. I also agree that White Wall Tire is an excellent replacement, mine is still white.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2012 at 7:54AM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

I really appreciate all your help everyone!

First, I am sorry my post got posted twice. That was an accident and I was at work trying to get off the net.

Also, I thought I would show you a picture of what it is since pictures speak a thousand words.
I called them and they said this is what happens to white hosta when it is first planted. I am in doubt about this since those of you that own one say they first emerge as white.

Again, I will call them and try to figure this out. By now they are all sold out.
I suppose they will exchange it for a true one.

Again, I really appreciate this fine group of people:-)

I'll bet you these ones are a feast for SLUGS for those of us that won one.

Here is what is looks like

Mike

    Bookmark   May 23, 2012 at 9:44AM
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Gesila(MI Z5)

Are you saying the hosta in the picture was labeled White Feather? If so, no, that is not White Feather. The hosta in the picture looks like Luna Moth.

Did you buy any other hosta at the same time? If so, what?

Gesila

    Bookmark   May 23, 2012 at 10:22AM
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HostaFever(5)

I totally agree,that is NOT White Feather, no chance of it!

    Bookmark   May 23, 2012 at 11:20AM
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paul_in_mn(4b)

It might be Pamela Lee.

Paul

    Bookmark   May 23, 2012 at 11:33AM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

That is what I got as a white feather hosta from hirts gardens. When it started to open , I questioned them on it and they swore to mr it was a white. It is the only one they sent me. :(

I was so looking forward to the real thing said I recieved. They told md to wait until next spring and after should grow white. Not sure about that.
I spent 20 dollars for this baby.

You guys are a good support. I am calling them again and I will keep you all abreasted. :)

Mike

    Bookmark   May 23, 2012 at 1:20PM
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becke52

These are my White Feathers, took the picture today. They are small, sad little hostas, despite being planted at two or three years ago. They have never come up green.
The second picture is next to what I believe is fortunei Albopicta. The White Feathers are only about 6 X 8.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2012 at 2:39PM
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meyermike_1micha(5)

First, I must say you have posted some mighty fine looking plants everyone! Wow.
Now, I have an update.
I called them again and now they are telling me that the vendor got the tags mixed up and sent them the wrong plants in which they sent mine wrong too.
So they will refund me and dozens of others once I send a photo and resend the white one if they ever get them.

You were right.

You have all been very helpful and nice to get to know. Of it is ok, I would live to join in the group. It sounds fun. Who would of thought I would catch the Hosta fever. They never use to interest me until I saw the many colors you can get

Mike:))

    Bookmark   May 23, 2012 at 7:18PM
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RadiantPoppy(7)

Thanks so much everyone for the information on this post. I was thinking of buying white feather hosta and white astilbe to reflect light and brighten up a shady spot in my yard. Sort of to give the illusion of things glowing in the shade of these two trees. But given all that I have read here, I will be going for a hosta that is heavily variegated with white instead. Thanks again!

    Bookmark   January 2, 2013 at 4:49PM
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hostanista

I'm really late chiming in to the White Feather Hosta question, but thought I'd throw in a pic of mine, which I really like only because it's so unusual at the beginning of the season. Yes it goes green as the spring ends and summer begins and yes slugs and rabbits might like it as much as I do, but what the heck - it gives me a few weeks of "AHHHH" so I'm rooting for it.

    Bookmark   January 3, 2013 at 7:05PM
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Moccasin(z9aMobileAL)

Hostanista, this is another shot-in-the-arm for the forum tonight! You have a beautiful plant there, delicate as spun sugar!.....

We all accept that hosta are beautiful but need their beauty rest in the winter. We accept that they show their beauty, in many growing zones, for much less than half a year. Yet we are faithful tending their growth and quick to applaud their beauty. This particular hosta, White Feather Boa, is a very special kind of hosta beauty, to be appreciated by the most patient and faithful of all hosta lovers. Because, this hosta needs the most beauty rest, the most careful of nurturing, and deigns to reveal her beauty for a matter of weeks only, if she so chooses.

I'd suggest an alternate name for this hosta, which might be recognized by the Brits coming here, more familiar with the implications of the title:

"She Who Must Be Obeyed" or SHE......as in Rider Haggards novel written in 1906 if I recall correctly. One of my favorite expressions, and hotly contested at my house. :)

This post was edited by moccasinlanding on Thu, May 30, 13 at 10:46

    Bookmark   January 3, 2013 at 8:38PM
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gogirlterri(5 IL)

I can't help but put things is perspective: I have grown many Hemerocalis over the years. They are mostly ugly green fronds burnt around the tips and their gorgeous blooms last only one day each.
Hostas are differnt. It is nice when their color stands out through the entire season. But if Hostanista's looks like that 3 weeks every spring I think I might try to find a place for it, that later would be dominated by others as they spread out for the season.
Theresa

    Bookmark   January 4, 2013 at 8:19AM
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rosalinda_gw

I have White Feather and do grow it in pots, that I sink in the ground to over winter. I think it is worth growing. This is a slow growing hosta, and definitely improves with age, as it fills in (another reason I grow it in pots).

This post was edited by rosalinda on Wed, May 29, 13 at 20:14

    Bookmark   May 29, 2013 at 8:06PM
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bentleygardens(z7b GA)

I have seen many people say they wont mess with white feather. First thing is see what the plant looks like, ask the seller to send you a picture. I have been selling them on ebay and there is still white down here in zone 8, albeight the white babies are coming up. Give the hosta a chance, I have a stunning picture on the Hosta Librabry, make sure you also buy from reputable sellers, Hirts puts out a lot of plants each day, I can see where they may have sent another instead

Ed

    Bookmark   May 30, 2013 at 6:26AM
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eclecticcottage(6b wny)

I got one at a plant swap this year. It's got one white leaf still, but it's streaky and turning green at the moment. It looks fairly healthy, and I potted it to combat slugs.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2013 at 9:50PM
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MstrPBK(4)

Side Question about White Feather ...

is Hosta 'White Trouble' sometimes referred to as Hosta 'White Feather'? The two pictures from the Hosta Library seem nearly the same and White Trouble does not seem to be available any where thus making me think that this is (pun not intended) rooted in naming confusion.

Peter Kelley
St. Paul, MN USA

    Bookmark   May 15, 2014 at 3:05PM
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