Uh Oh, Hostas on Order

ci_lantroJuly 25, 2012

Can't believe I did it but I just did a major demo to the Wish List.

On order:

Restless Sea

Yellow River

Lakeside Shoremaster

Abba Dabba Do

Deep Blue Sea

Lakeside Coal Miner


Sun Power

Olive Bailey Langdon

Dick Ward

Guardian Angel

Jack of Diamonds

Alex Summers

This is the largest number of hostas that I have ever ordered at one time. I've been so good, looking, shopping and not buying but a few all summer (maybe a half-dozen).

First time order from Green Mountain Hostas. Checked Dave's & reviews were positive.

Only problem is that I've noticed w/ the hostas that I've bought late in the season is that they're a little slow to take off. Most of 'em just kinda' sit there the first summer. But given the hot & dry this summer, I prolly won't lose much growth anyway.

(Heads up--GMH is having a 20% off sale w/ free shipping on orders over $100.)

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idiothe(4 MN)

wow - good ordering - every one of those plants is a winner!

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 2:55PM
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scholli(z5 MA)

I got my first order from Green Mountain Hosta last month (took advantage of that 20% off sale). I got Earth Angel, Spartacus, Lakeside Dragonfly, and Christmas Pageant and I was thrilled with my order. All were 1 huge eye except for Lakeside Dragonfly which had 2 medium eyes. Nice roots, healthy plants, and carefully packaged. I will definitely buy from them again.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 5:34PM
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Nice selection!

I so need an "Alex Summers" as well as a few more.

I've been fighting myself about a trip to Hallson's - about 1 and 1/2 hours away. The fuel will itself will cost $30. or more. But, just to see mature plants (I hope) in situ.... Chris has a 25% off sale right now so I think it just might be time!


    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 5:38PM
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Yes, I have ordered from Green Mountain Hosta before and had great results too. I was hanging on trying to stop but I figured that the latest hosta I'm getting really NEED to have a good home....

So.....here are the ones which might be shipped Monday. I was going to wait until they arrived, before I let the cat out of the bag, but since Ci_Lantro and Gail and Scholli have succumbed to temptation and a good deal, why the heck not...and the list is
Dawns Early Light -med
Feather Boa --small
First Mate --med
Fragrant Fire --med
Gold Drop --small
Happy Hearts --small
Jimmy Crack Corn --large
Little Sunspot --small
Morning Light --small
On Stage --med (only place I found it in stock)
Paradigm --med
Royal Standard --giant (I have another one, but did not want to chance losing it)put one in more sun than the other
Secret Love --med-- a plantaginea not fragrant? we'll see
Silver Bay --med
Summer Music --med
Tick Tock --small
Undulata Univittata --med
Verna Jean --small (I have one, it is a little jewel and mostly ignored, but it grows well)

and that is what I ordered from Green Mt....we won't talk about what I ordered from Chris at Hallsons, Gary at Naylor, or Avalon, or Contrary Mary's, or Mason Hollow. All since the weekend.

Time for another trip to WalMart for some pots. :)

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 6:16PM
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ilovetogrow z9 Jax Florida

A Many-splendored Thing
Chinese Sunrise
Dance With Me
Lakeside Love Affaire
Little Sunspot
Maple Leaf
Morning Light
My Friend Nancy
Platinum Tiara
Summer Music

Darn enablers. And only one was on a wish list. Paula

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 7:39PM
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Glad to hear that you were happy with your order, Scholli.

Moccasin, I read an old thread where you had remarked about getting some hostas from Green Mtn so that's what prompted me to go look at their website. They have a pretty good selection. Obviously, a lot of the ones that I wanted. Sent a follow up msg to them to see if I could add 'On Stage' to the order. I'd debated on it & then just had another look at one in a yard in the neighborhood. It's a nice hosta so decided to see if I could get it with this order.

Gail, I wish Hallson's was so close to me...that darned pond is in the way.

Now I need to order up some rain. Anybody got the 1-800 number?

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 8:11PM
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Green Mountain is Bob Solberg's operation.
Bought from him at Midwest Convention.

BTW: The reason that "late season purchases" just sit there is that you've bought them during their rooting season. Hostas put on top growth, then flower, then increase roots. Sometimes you'll get a 2nd flush.
And remember the old rule of perennials.... they sleep the first year, creep the 2nd year and leap the 3rd year... but for many large hosta, that leap may not come till 4th or 5th year.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 9:05PM
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Ludi _PA_7a

Goodness there seems to be an aweful lot of enabling these days.

Gratz all on your new plants !!!


    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 9:37PM
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Melissa, no, Bob Solberg is in North Carolina, he has Green Hill. Green Mountain is in Vermont, in the Green Mountains.
They just both happen to be GREEN.... :)

Yes, I was buying from Nancy and Bob Solberg soon after I fell in love with hosta, because of all the plantaginea hybrids and such that they originated and sell. But my very first hosta order was from Plant Delights Nursery also in North Carolina, which is Tony Avent's place.

There are an awful lot of good people in the hosta trade, originators and nurserymen alike. Not talking about the way business now, just about the kind of folks they are. Very nice people.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 9:52PM
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I stand corrected!
Well, actually I'm lying down, but you get the point!
Besides, here in MN, hills and mountains are one in the same!

    Bookmark   July 25, 2012 at 11:40PM
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idiothe(4 MN)

mocassin - one comment that might explain one of your notes... Secret Love is very nice - not sun tolerant, btw... mine is completely burned up right now, while my Blue Flame (probably the same plant) in deep shade looks great. In Alabama heat and sun, I'd give it lots of shade to try to keep the bloom. Both of these are light margined sports from Fragrant Blue.

There's no evidence of any plantaginea in FB or its sports. It doesn't have the big white plantaginea flowers. Paul Aden said it was a cross of two of his seedlings. It was registered as the first hosta to combine good blue foliage with fragrant flowers.

BUT I've grown maybe 20 of them - have never been able to detect more than the slightest hint of fragrance... so little that it might just be suggestion... and I've tried the experiment with maybe 50 garden visitors and nobody has ever noted more than the slightest fragrance... and the sports are equally unfragrant.

Zilis continued the description of FB as fragrant - perhaps the original plant was, but all the tc since are not? People argue about this one - but even if it is slightly fragrant, its not plantaginea fragrance...

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 2:18AM
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1. Melissa, you were making a Mountain out of that Green (mole) Hill? I thought it was a logical mistake really. There was a movie with Hugh Grant, something like The Englishman Who Went Up A Hill And Came Down A Mountain?
Anyway, it was cute.

2. And, Idiothe, I've read about the fragrance issues with Fragrant Blue et al. I still like how FB looks, and especially Fragrant Blue Ribbons--it is the palest powdery-est blue I ever saw on a plant. I thought I'd try a few more from FB, because they seem to be a compact size, and look really vigorous for the most part.

I'll remember your cautions, and keep Secret Love AND Blue Flame out of the sun as much as possible....which doesn't mean I can deliver them from the heat.

Since tonight when I got a good whiff of several plantaginea all at one time, my affection for the species grows. After that experience, I visited the SPECIES UPDATE at Hosta Library and looked up the range of hosta in Asia, and read the species update for plantaginea by Schmid.

While much of it went right over my head, I noted the part where he says that when plantaginea is the pod parent it is dominant and the offspring would take its characteristics from the plantaginea....and I wondered, if perhaps in the case of Fragrant Blue, was plantaginea NOT the pod parent? Just a question in my head because of the non-scent of FB.


    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 3:31AM
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As far as fragrance intensity in so call 'fragrant' hosta is concerned...compared to Royal Standard, I've been disappointed with all of them that I have...(that have so far bloomed for me)...Summer Fragrance, Fried Bananas, Fried Green Tomatoes, Holy Mole, Honeybells, So Sweet. I'm waiting for Guacamole & Fragrant Bouquet to bloom.

My plantaginea is a second year tissue culture so I'm not expecting it to bloom (although the 2nd year TC's, June, are sending up scapes!). Everything that I've read & have been told is that plantaginea is the THE most fragrant of the lot. I'm tempted to order a mature division of plantaginea but, if I did that, then I'd want 5 or 6 others to justify the postage and prolly still wouldn't get to experience the bloom this year anyway. So, my prudent self is trying to tell me to just be patient and wait for the youngster to grow up.

Mocassin, I (think) I have undulata univittata. (NOID tentatively ID'd.) Of all the hosta in my yard, it's the most challenging to keep looking decent, i.e., it doesn't thrive on benign neglect. Have to keep the water poured on it to keep from crisping up and it's particularly sensitive to 2,4-D lawn weed killer mishaps/ oversprays that don't appear to phase the other hosta in the yard. Thinking that I should try it in a pot, that it would work better that way than in the mass planting that I've tried. Also, UU hasn't been a vigorous hosta for me at all (even the ones that don't get accidentally hit with WeedBGone!) Very slow going contrary to what I've read about it. Could be because my soil is very sandy?

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 3:46PM
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idiothe(4 MN)

I certainly agree that Fragrant Blue is worth growing,as are the sports, for its appearance alone. I just wish it had a different name, because anybody growing it for fragrance will be disappointed.

As to plantaginea in its heritage? If Aden's description is to be trusted, then it was the result of breeding two seedlings,plants that never had names, only the numbers 8413 and 8270... so plantaginea wasn't the pod or the pollen parent. As far as I know, Aden never confirmed if plantaginea was a "grandparent" at all. He's gone now, so he can't answer this for us...

The lavender flowers of FB also don't give any hint of plantaginea heritage.

I think the confusion comes based on repetition of this phrase I found on one hosta retail webpage... "Almost all of H. plantaginea offspring except H. 'Fragrant Blue' have a wonderful fragrance but they all have smaller blooms than plantaginea. " People might well assume that FB has plantaginea heritage - but there's no evidence for this...

Plantaginea as a pollen parent is hard to predict - but as a pod parent it tends to carry pretty strongly into the offspring a cluster of traits that appear to be linked. If the seedling gets the plantaginea fragrance, it also gets largish white flowers (though smaller than pure plantaginea blooms) and will probably get rounded leaves that have some shine and pretty good sun tolerance. I'm sure some scientific type has a theory on why those traits carry through together with some uniformity, as when breeding with other species and cultivars, the traits don't seem linked like this.

Pretty interesting stuff - we'll never run out of things to ponder on hostas...

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 4:13PM
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Ci_Lantro, I dont think you'll find a plantaginea of any sort at this time. I've put it on my list to get is they are out of stock when I order something, and the word comes back, we are out, we do not grow it(from the nurseries further north); so plan on putting an order for the next spring delivery. The bigger the better, IMHO.

I also ordered a second Royal Standard which will be here soon. Of the ones which I figure are fragrant among the ones currently blooming, there is Fragrant Dream, Fragrant King, and Sugar and Cream. A few others are opening up, but the ones I named are the big blossomsp[;

I'm waiting on Aphrodite to open. Cross fingers there.
And I just got in Miss Saigon from Hornbaker, along with Royal Flush and Yin.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 6:37PM
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Sure enough, I checked Homestead Farms for plantaginea (since they're holding an order for me 'til the weather is a bit cooler) & the website says it's currently unavailable.

I have three nice sized clumps of Royal Standard. Two of them are situated where I want them to stay & one is a spare. After it blooms, I'm going to dig the spare & divide it so I can spread it around more to replace some other plain greens that I have. Might as well get the fragrance bonus.

I also got an Aphrodite TC and it's growing nicely. Wish, though, that I had ordered another plantaginea instead since Aphrodite is unreliable in the bloom dept. Don't care about double blooms; I just want the fragrance. Going out to pour Miracle Grow on 'em. :)

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 7:56PM
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Ci, you know what you like, so go for it. I have one almost mature plantaginea, and two in their first full year of growing. I got them last fall, so they overwintered down here. However, they contracted foliar nematodes, which I treated them for, and they are growing back in. Probably by next year--which will be year #2--they may be recovered enough to bloom.

It's good to have another plantaginea fan on the forum. In the article on Hosta Library about SPECIES UPDATE for plantaginea, Schmid mentioned that the Japanese seem to be growing it for the blooms, and their H. plantaginea var. japonicum (or whatever, I cannot remember it right now) is used to breed with the Chinese plantaginea to overcome the lethal factor which kills off the seed......and makes it more fertile....well, I'm no botanist and I do the best I can understanding stuff on the first read, but to remember it and DISCUSS it, I recommend you read it for yourself.
Schmid had some things to say about Fragrant Blue also.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2012 at 9:50PM
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squirejohn zone4 VT

Uh-Oh is Right!

Last Sat. my DW and I visited a local nursery that specializes in hostas and daylilies but is open to the public only four weekends per year. Although they have over 800 hostas not all are for sale. I had a list if 6 hostas I was interested but not commited to buying. The only one they had on my list for sale was Potomac Pride which I ordered. However after seeing other hostas I, on the spur of the moment, also ordered:
Northern Exposure
Deep Blue Sea
Rainforest Sunrise
Ice Age Trail
Emerald Ruff Cut

Why do I make these spur of the moment decisions? Ahrrr In hindsite the only other hosta I would have ordered is Deep Blue Sea - wife's choice.

After looking at all 800 or so hostas my DW and I (independant viewing)were really impressed with Potomac Glory. So what do I do but find it for sale at Land of the Giants. It's being shipped Mon. along with Hoosier Dome.

Now it's not as though I can go out with a cheap garage sale shovel, dig a hole and plop in a hosta. Due to extensive red maple tree roots it takes me a minimum of a least an hour, armed with axe, pry-bar, pick-axe and shovels just to dig a planting hole. I then line the hole with Spin-Out fabric and add the soil mix.

With a 1937 BD and worsening COPD I ask myself why do I put myself through this hole digging misery? Why not take up a less strenuous hobby... may like bird lotto...or Parchessei or something... Now where did I put the Geritol!

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 9:02AM
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SquireJohn, get rid of the Geritol and go for a green foods diet. Like GREEN SMOOTHIES. Put your food supplements in the smoothie, and you'll never know you took it.

In the Hallson arrivals today, I got two bearded iris 'Before The Storm' and two humongous daylilies 'Alabama Jubilee'...talk about impressive, they were that...Oh heah and 3 of the red 'Stella de Oro'....so I will have some fancy looking daylilies in the 100% sunshine daylily bed next year.

You're not the only one stressing your bod in the name of a pretty garden. And what is bird lotto? I'm a bird fancier but never heard of that. I'm into Mahjong...and Angry Bird.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 7:49PM
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The Ruby Stella is quite nice. I planted 5 single-fan plants in my front garden last spring. This year, they've almost completely filled in to be one large stand. They're quite impressive and can take big heat.

You'll like 'em!

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 8:21PM
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Squirejohn, you went to the nursery with a list of 6 plants and you came home with 6 plants. I'd say that you showed remarkable restraint!

With your maple tree situation, did you ever think about trying an electric reciprocating saw (Sawzall) to help hack out a hole? I'd give it a try with the longest blade you can find to fit into the saw, using a crow bar or something to make a pilot hole to plunge the saw blade into. Might not work worth a hoot but ought to be worth a try at least.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2012 at 10:23PM
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squirejohn zone4 VT

moccasinlanding -I can't recall the specifics of bird lotto but used to play it when I was a kid in the third grade. Our teacher was a birder and the game,as I recall, had a large board with photos of many birds that you had to name. I used to be pretty good at ID'ing local birds - not so good with warblers but since I've lost my hearing I don't bother anymore.

ci_lantro - A Sawsall would help but the roots are such a tangled mess its a chore to even expose them. The trees are not needed for shade so cutting them down would be best. Unfortunately they are close to a power line and the last one I cut down cost me $650 - WHOOPS

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 6:00AM
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Squirejohn--I wasn't thinking of trying to expose the roots first. I would try cutting thru dirt & all, using a crow bar to plunge a hole in the ground and then sticking the blade in the hole and cutting out a large circle approx. the size of the planting hole. Depending on how it went, then cutting across the diameter in an X pattern. I've never had to deal with maple tree roots so have no idea if it would work.

As to tree removal--we're fortunate in that there are a lot of guys around here who do tree work. Have found that it really pays to shop around. We've not had to pay that much BUT we always want the big wood left (we can cut it up & split it) and usually have to get someone else in w/ a stump chipper. Last one that we had taken out was an oak growing very close to a large pine. We opted to not have it chipped because doing so would have meant also destroying some large pine roots. Had the guy cut it very close to the ground. The I split out what segements of the trunk that I could, piled dirt on what was left & planted hosta atop. $650 prolly isn't all that bad if you're getting a turnkey job though, esp. given the power line. Might do better on the price (per each) if you need more than one taken out.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 9:51AM
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irawon(5a Ottawa)

Just wondering. Is this plantagenia? I've been trying to identify this hosta for some time now. It has white flowers in August and grows like a weed in my yard. I've had it since the late 70's, have divided it many times, given many divisions away. Now have 10 mature clumps which have grown very large, just slightly over the 20" height listed in the Hosta Library but my clumps are way wider than the 24" listed. The leaves do have the 9 vein pairs. What else could it be?

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 11:34AM
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Irawon, your plant is Royal Standard.

Glad to hear that people are still in the mood to plant this summer :)

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 1:11PM
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irawon(5a Ottawa)

OMG, ctopher, then I have 11 of them. It just didn't look like my RS to me because the RS that I bought in 2007 only has 8 vein pairs. Is RS less fragrant than plantaginea?

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 2:40PM
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FWIW, my mature RS's have 7-8 leaf pairs. Mine doesn't have that much rugosity and is a darker green but it's grown mostly in shade.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 5:52PM
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I heard that Royal Standard has very fragrant blooms. Have you noticed that with yours? I just ordered a second one of the RS.

One which I'm adding to the wish list is Willamette, a cross between the species plantaginea and Royal Standard. It is supposed to be scrumptious. Meanwhile, I have a scape growing on my RS, so I'll soon experience the scent for myself.

And I got potted up today
Miss Saigon
Emily Dickinson
Hoosier Harmony
and about 30 more, which I'll have to picture later. Oh my aching back!!

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 11:44PM
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Moccasin--I didn't know about Williamette until I read the plantaginea Species Update (Schmid) you recommended. Nosed around a little looking for it with no luck. Have you found a source for it?

Irawon, plantaginea is supposed to be the most fragrant of the fragrant hostas.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2012 at 11:59PM
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Ci, I checked Hosta Finder and no listing there about availability.

It is a registered hosta though.
Registered to:
Chet Tompkins/Chuck Purtymun/Pete & Jean Ruh 2003

When I wanted to find another hosta, Steve_Mass suggested I try to contact the originators. Since it was registered in 2003, it might be available as OS from their gardens, do you reckon? I know I'd really love to have a cross between the two most fragrant of the plantagineas. I think it must be named for the Willamette River? but other things have that name as well, so not definite about that.

MYHOSTAS.BE says it blooms later than plantaginea.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2012 at 12:11AM
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Was thinking the same thing--contacting one of the people who registered it--and found Pete Ruh's website. Only thing I found there to order is hosta seeds. Will try sending a msg thru the website and see what I can find out.

Also saw that about the bloom time. Wish there were really fragrant hosta that bloomed early & rebloomed. Or, better yet, bloomed all summer long!

Have to remark that although I'm a little disappointed by the intensity of the fragrance in some of the other hosta, Fried Green Tomatoes and Holy Mole do have beautiful large blooms. Still waiting for Guac, Stained Glass & Cathedral Windows to bloom. May not get a bloom from CW this year since it's only a 3? yr old (mkt ready plant from Hostaliners last year.)

    Bookmark   July 29, 2012 at 1:20AM
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My Guacs are blooming and the fragrance is light, but very sweet. The flowers themselves are just beautiful. I have 1 guac in very heavy shade and 2 in light shade and notice no difference in the blooms, fwiw.

Ci lantro, nice order! I was just looking at Fujibotan, gorgeous double blooms...drool!

    Bookmark   July 29, 2012 at 8:32AM
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irawon(5a Ottawa)

Thanks, for the comments about Royal Standards everyone. I'm going to be a bit more observant re fragrance once they bloom.

I just planted Baby Blue Eyes and Whee the other day. My hosta collecting has slowed down this year!

    Bookmark   July 29, 2012 at 10:18AM
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Ci, I'd appreciate it very much if you'd relay what you find out about Willamette to me directly at my email address--which is listed in my member page here.

I would not mind having seeds of such a fine plant, selfed of course or maybe another plantaginea x Royal Standard cross.
Whatever comes of such a mix has to be good.

Irawon, when my Fragrant King and Fragrant Dream bloomed, along with a couple of others, I did not smell anything at first because we had so much rain I think it washed the pollen away, or whatever substance has the fragrance. But then one afternoon late, when the wind was still, not a breeze at all, I walked out to the middle of the area where the plantaginea family have their colony, and I became aware of a really heavenly scent just everywhere. It was in the air, and I could not tell from which plant it came. But those were not the Royal Standard, nor the mama plantaginea, which has yet to bloom. Taking her own sweet time. And the show ain't over until the fat lady sings. I really envy you with your platoon of Royal Standards that are all mature and probably have multiple scapes on each plant....wow, that would be worth throwing a party for 10 of your closest friends. In some place or other I read that it was late afternoon when they open or exude their scent. So maybe you do not have to stay up all night to have the party. If I got an invitation, you can bet I'd be the first to arrive.....probably with Ci right behind me!!! :)

I'll go take a picture of the fragrant ones blooming and begin another thread so it can be directly searchable. I'm sure a lot of people would be interested in seeing a lot of the blooms from fragrant hosta.

Sure hope I get my software straightened out which is where I save my gardening and hosta information. It doesn't want to let me save it. Some problem with administrative rights on Windows 7, began after the last HP update.What a bummer.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2012 at 2:54PM
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Moccasin, I just sent an email to Peter Ruh's 'Hosta Homestead'. I'll certainly relay the info to you when I hear something back.

I'm wanting to try starting some hosta from seed, too. I'm just totally confused on what seeds would be good for a beginner to hosta seeds. (I've started quite a few seeds indoors for veggies, etc. in the past.) I want to have a good chance of getting something 'interesting' or fragrant. When I was reading the Schmid piece, I zeroed in on plantaginea x Royal Standard (Willamette), so totally agree that seeds from that pairing sound very nice.

Anyhoo, I'm going to have to read up cuz I know next to nothing about the hosta crosses, etc.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2012 at 6:33PM
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Steve Massachusetts Zone 5b


If you want something fragrant go to the source and use some Plantaginea open pollinated seed. That just means that you let the bees make the choices. I would also suggest that you buy some seed from a streaked breeding plant from Jeff Miller (M&M seeds) this fall/winter. That will give you some variegated or streaked seedlings to grow. And you might want to read some of the Hosta Seed Growers Forum. Often there are seed exchanges or donations to newbies made there.


    Bookmark   July 29, 2012 at 7:56PM
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