Online Purchase

Charlie44(7b)June 15, 2012

I ordered these 2 hosta's online earlier in the week. They arrived yesterday looking like this. Is this common or am I just lucky ?

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dublinbay z6 (KS)

I have little online ordering experience, but have received 5 hosta from several different online places whose names many people would recognize, and all of mine arrived looking a lot perkier than that--from those in decent-sized square pots to bareroots wrapped in wet newspaper.

That's all I know--but I'd guess that if you watered yours well after planting them (and the pot has good drainage) and you place them in a shady part of your garden for a few days while they acclimate themselves to their new neighborhood, they may take off and do fine.

Lucky isn't good enough--I wish you GOOD luck! : )


    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 11:51AM
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Not common, Charlie! Accidents & the USPS delaying delivery happen, but that rough handling is disappointing... Were they wrapped securely? Being hostas, you know that plant will make it & be beautiful next year. I'd snip off the broken stem leaves.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 11:57AM
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bkay2000(8a TX)

Were they bare root? Did you soak them? Someone will probably suggest you tape them, no matter your answers to the other questions. To do that, hold the leaves together and tape them together with masking tape until they regain their turgidity.

Someone more knowledgeable than me will give you better answers, but will want to know the above.


    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 12:21PM
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bkay2000(8a TX)

Dont' snip off the leaves! Absolutely don't remove the leaves unless they wilt, even if they are half broken. They provide nutrients to the roots that will help nourish the plant for next year.

My step son dropped one of mine flat upside down and broke several leaves. Some 3/4 broken ones remain viable and provide what the plant needs to be nice next year. The drop was about 2 months ago and the leaves still look fine and they're still 3/4 broken.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 12:26PM
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These aren't wilted they're broken. Yes they were bare root and I personally don't think they were wrapped well. They had a little dry newspaper around them.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 12:36PM
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Babka NorCal 9b

I got one like that once. Three out of four leaves had badly broken petioles. It looked like crap for the whole year. Mistakes happen, so I would contact the vendor to see if you can work something out.

There are several vendors who have EXCELLECT customer service and some who don't. Only one way to find out, give your vendor a holler.


    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 1:08PM
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Steve Massachusetts Zone 5b

It depends on who you buy from. I use a vendor that sometimes ships plants like that. Out of five plants that I ordered I got a Tenryu and a Regal Supreme that look like your two. They will be fine next year. But this year they will look like crap.

Yes, I soak them ahead of time. Yes, I use masking tape. Sometimes I use stakes to hold up the leaves. They still look like crap this year.


    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 1:15PM
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bkay2000(8a TX)

First, I would send my complaint to the grower. It's not normal to receive wilted plants unless they were delayed in shipment. The roots should have been wrapped in wet towels and then covered in plastic (mine always are, anyway). They should have also been packed so they didn't get broken. I would send photos with my email complaint. See what they say and if they offer you any remedies.

You dont' say where you are (your zone), but it's too late to get mail order plants here. (I'm in Dallas) They are likely to fry in the mail truck unless you happen to get shipping during an overcast week. That could be part of your problem. The grower should know that, though.

If someone more knowledgeable than me doesn't chime in, I would dig them up and soak them for several hours in plain water. I would tape them (all the leaves) as described in the link below about moving leafed out hosta. Wait until they have soaked to see if those broken ones regain their turgitity. I'll see if I can get a photo of that broken leaf later today. If I can, I'll post it for you.

Then I would find a smaller pot that more closely matches the size of the roots. You're likely to get root rot next winter if you leave them in those barrels. If you decide to leave them in the barrels, cover the barrels next winter so that they stay dry until they start to come up next spring.

Good luck.


Here is a link that might be useful: moving a fully leafed out hosta

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 1:23PM
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bkay, these are broken not wilted. I did contact the vendor earlier and they will be sending relacements out today. I live in Garland.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 1:40PM
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bernd ny zone5

In respect to wilting, I once got conifer plants in bad shape from the west coast, because they shipped it with regular mail, and it took them 7 days to arrive. This year hosta nurseries shipped USPS Priority Mail or UPS, and it only took less than 3 days. I would ask that plants get shipped the beginning of the week so they do not sit in a hot warehouse over the weekend.

In respect to broken leaf stems, you could put a twig along side the stem and tape it. I do it occasionally and it works.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 2:22PM
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I also tape the with masking tape, and I have skewers like wooden shiskabobs that I stick in the pot around them to help keep the plant erect. Some I got last week were in need of propping up, it is a basic "Ken's Rule #1" .....and i got a delivery this week from MN which was totally fine. I have another order coming next week, but you have to pay attention to shipment day of the week.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 4:52PM
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The blue painters tape isn't quite as sticky to work with, that's what I use, it's a little easier on the hosta leaves and I'd stake them for sure. I received a hosta one time that was totally folded over and broken 'Golden Scepter' but it came back fine the next year.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 6:19PM
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I would like to clarify a comment I made earlier about the packing. When I said I didn't think it was packed well I meant in terms of protecting the plant from someone mishandling the box in shipping, not the plants themselfs. I by no means meant the vendor was at fault just the post office.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 8:06PM
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bkay2000(8a TX)

Oh, Hi Charlie,

I recognize you now. We're almost neighbors.

Those plants I got at Lowe's in Richardson are doing fine, by the way. One of mine was mislabled, too. It's a shame that they had that problem. They had some nice hosta. I ended up with a Dream Queen, a Summer Breeze and Pizzazz. I can't find anything except the most common ones at Calloways, Northhaven, Lowes and Home Depot. I can't remember the name of the nursery, but it's the one there when you exit LBJ at Plano Rd. THey have a few nice ones. He told me he grew them himself from plugs he got from Walters which should be good.

Nice to see you back.


    Bookmark   June 15, 2012 at 8:27PM
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bernd ny zone5

My hosta shipments arrive in long rigid boxes with triangular cross section. I do not see how plants could get broken during shipment, and mine are not.
In respect to HD, whenever I go there I will inspect their hostas. Recently they have some which are not identified with cultivar names, seem to be juvenile and do not give any hint at mature appearance.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 8:21AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

you got.. live plants.. and there is nothing inherently wrong with them ...

plant them .... they will live..

this is one reason.. they should have been ordered for delivery earlier in the year ...

now they are sending you more live plants.. so you are getting 2 for one pricing ...

i repeat.. there is nothing wrong with those plants.. and if you dont like the look.. find a new seller ...

in the olden days.. i used to get what looked like celery bunches.. in early spring.. and by the second flush in mid summer.. they looked just fine ... and they grew gangbusters the next year ... and that is how it used to be done ... basically.. it was a giant bundle of roots .. and that is where the future is ... not in those leaves ...

IMHO.. you did not get dissed.. you did not get ripped off ... you just found a seller who isnt as anal about delivery ... perhaps you would be more impressed.. if you were using one of our favored sellers ...

anyway ... i agree on the pot.. hosta have a slight tendency to like being pot bound.. it makes them grow faster ... get it in a smaller pot.. even if all you do.. is bury the pot back into the half barrel ... and then sequentially up-pot it..

what i want to know.. is what you paid.. and if it was a bargain.. then you got what you paid for ...


BTW.. if you want it to grow faster.. move the barrel to the driveway ....

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 10:41AM
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In the immortal words of the Rolling Stones, you can't always get what you want.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2012 at 4:38PM
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