What Hostas are just not for your garden?

BungalowMonkeys z6 VAJuly 24, 2014

Following some of the posts this week, learned that Frances William is one of those Hostas for some, but not everyone. Mine is in month 2 and doing good, but many of you prefer to admire it from a friends garden. After grabbing this little scraggler on the $0.50 sale rack called Snow Cap, i've learned it is another hosta that is also best admired from a friend's garden.

The hostadirect description says "In maturity this Hosta seldom looks healthy or attractive. The growth seems to stunt with only one or two leaf displaying after several years, the edges always looking ratty and unpleasant"

Almost miss my 50cents now, but that is just the inner cheapo in me. Planted this scraggler anyways and will watch it "rat" out over the years. My question to you guys, what are the other Hostas that are best admired from a friends garden?

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mikgag Z5b NS Canada

Christmas Tree
Spellbound
T-Rex
Carnival
Dancing in the Rain

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 6:16PM
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hostahosta

I bought these 3 Snow Cap in 2010, before I knew anything about hosta. Still have them. I agree, not the best, but they fill this area and I don't think they're terrible.

I have others that do worse for me: Emerald Ruff Cut (always with brown spots and edges), Brim Cup (edges tear out), Carnival (though first year, so reserving opinion). Singing in the Rain (edges always tear out, but it did a little better this year)

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 6:32PM
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coll_123(5)

Yeah, I am not a fan of ones that desiccate badly ( Frances Williams, emerald Ruff cut, even though I still keep that one around,,,hoping it gets better one day). Also hate ones that drawstring and if I knew ahead of time that one was prone to that, I would avoid those. I have Barbara Ann, which is a drawstringer, but the one or two gorgeous leaves prevent me from being able to kick it to the curb.

The other ones that have no place in my garden are ones with thin substance- especially thin ones with white edges or centers.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 6:58PM
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BungalowMonkeys z6 VA

Hosta-noob here, what is drawstring on a hosta?

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 7:06PM
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DelawareDonna(7A)

Anything labeled "slow grower."

DD

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 7:10PM
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coll_123(5)

Drawstringing is when the white edges of a hosta curl under, as if there was a drawstring pulled around the edge. It happens in the spring when the blue or green center of the leaves grow faster than the white edges. So for a week or two the plant looks fabulous, then, not so much.

Here is a pic I just took of Barbara Ann....the one big leaf is not drawstringing, and the others are... HATE IT

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 7:23PM
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timhensley_gw

DuPage Delight. It suffers from spring burn more than any hosta I know. It's going to the neighbors yard. Eskimo Pie actually grows slower than my Great Expectations. GE is going to the neighbors yard as well.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 8:01PM
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maggiepie_gw

mikgag, can you explain why Christmas Tree and T-Rex are not for your garden?
My Christmas Tree is in 2nd year for me and I am really liking it.


I got T-Rex in autmn last year and it was zapped in Spring just as it was starting to unfurl.
I thought it was a goner for sure but has recovered really well.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 10:03PM
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hostatakeover z6a swMO

Wow, I was going to ask what "drawstringing" meant, too. Thank you for explaining, Phil. Now I know what's wrong with my Capitol Hill.

And grrrr about Emerald Ruff Cut....my new purchase just arrived yesterday.

And about Snow Cap..... I took this picture of a Snow Cap leaf at the Convention Leaf Show last month and was amazed I'd never heard of it before, it's just so stunning. But after I got home and began searching, nowhere do I see a picture of a Snow Cap hosta that comes even close to looking like that. Has anyone's Snow Cap ever looked like this leaf?

Bungalowmonkeys, the type of Hostas that fare poorly in my garden are TINY ones, like smalls, minis and dwarfs. They simply disappear.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 10:11PM
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beverlymnz4

Too thin or too early (gets eaten or frost bit).

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 10:33PM
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jimr66

1 Royal Standard---Boring
2. Brim Cup--- fades away after 1 season
3. Emerald Ruff Cut---see above
4. albomarginata--- just too common
5 lancifolia---see above

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 12:46AM
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Brandys_garden(6)

Dream Queen
I am on the fence about Fire and Ice... We'll see if my (suspected) F & I, which is labeled as a NBC continues to do well and comes back next year.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 1:23AM
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sandyslopes z5 northern UT

Well, Thunderbolt, Dancing in the Rain, and Loyalist have all faded away on their own, so they're not for my garden.

Minis will get swallowed up and disappear if I plant them in my gardens. I'm not having any luck with them in pots, either. No more minis.

Funny thing is Frances Williams does pretty well for me. It grows slowly, but looks good most of the year being at the base of a big tree where it gets light but hardly any direct sun.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 1:37AM
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BungalowMonkeys z6 VA

Hostahosta- those arent terrible, they actually dont look bad. Certainly not what the description is saying.

That you for explaining drawstring. Ive seen it, but didnt realize it was not desirable. Just thought it was a leaf style.

Brandy - why dream queen? It looks great in that pot.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 6:14AM
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Brandys_garden(6)

That's not Dream Queen, that's Captain Kirk, a young one. I had Dream Queen last year and she gave me nothing but trouble. She did not come back this year. :(

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 6:53AM
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ThistleAndMaize(Zone 5a- Eastern IA)

Odd (to me) comments about emerald ruff cut. It's gorgeous in my yard and no spots or browning. I even moved it to a new spot where I could see it from the patio because I like it so much.
It's in a spot that is bright light but no direct light. It's just lovely. (In my yard)
Same with fire and ice. I expected that one to be a dud but bright light/no direct light and it's gorgeous.
As for what doesn't work for me, I can't think of one that's a major dud. Frances Williams is finicky but works in some spots and not in others but I can't figure out why. Must just be the individual plants and their maturity levels. The big, old ones do better than the new ones planted the past two years. Francee does well but doesn't appeal to me visually. And go figure i seem to have half a dozen of those.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 7:28AM
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funnthsun z7A - Southern VA

It's not just individual plants and maturity, being in zone 5 doesn't hurt either, Thistle. Prime hosta zone. But some hostas are just dogs, no matter the zone. There will always be someone that has a perfect specimen, though, even if 99% of the forum can't grow it. I always just hope THAT someone is me, LOL This time, it's you! :)

I would suggest that before you break out the money to buy any hosta, you do 60 seconds of research on it here. If I see one that I'm interested in and am not familiar with it already, I go on google and type the name in, then gardenweb. It will give you results from the hosta forum and the results are way better than the search feature here. It literally takes 60 seconds to pull up a few posts and read them quickly. You'll know if it's a dog pretty quickly, someone will mention it. You'll avoid the known problem hostas easily this way.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 9:01AM
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BungalowMonkeys z6 VA

That makes sense since that captain kirk looks great. Just assumed it was dream queen, sorry about that.

So true about googling before you buy. This forum almost always comes up in the top five spots.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 9:15AM
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ninamarie(4Ont.)

I decided yesterday to turf American Sweetheart. It's pretty enough, when I can see it through the holes. Despite herculean efforts, I just cannot keep the slugs off her. Usually, she is a mess of holes by the beginning of June. This year, she has lasted into July, which is a record.
Barbara Ann is inconspicuous enough, because she does not grow, so I will replace her with a better doer and a more attractive hosta. I have already turfed Carnival.
Spellbound is an outstanding hosta for me and definitely one of my favourites. Christmas Tree is boring, but otherwise, unimpeachable. My specimen is about 15 years old and has never given me any trouble.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 9:22AM
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bkay2000

Notice that people who say, "I don't know why you don't like that one, it does fine in my garden" are almost always in zone 5?

bk

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 10:33AM
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ThistleAndMaize(Zone 5a- Eastern IA)

Oh, I meant in my yard some FW do well and in others it gets the craggy edges like everyone complains about. So I experience both ends of that hosta! :)
I just can't figure out why it does well in one spot and then just 10 feet down it gets the burnt edges, so that's why I said it must be the individual plants and their maturity levels. If I ever crack the code, maybe I'll be hosta famous. ;)

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 10:36AM
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DelawareDonna(7A)

I almost turfed Dream Queen, but decided to give her another chance by relocating her. Now she's a keeper and should look great next year.

DD

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 11:54AM
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BungalowMonkeys z6 VA

With dream queen, what did you move her from and into?

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 12:21PM
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DelawareDonna(7A)

She went from shade to morning sun and afternoon shade. I loosened up the clay soil really well and mixed it with miracle grow soil before planting.

DD

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 12:46PM
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mikgag Z5b NS Canada

Zone 5 rocks.....tee hee

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 12:50PM
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DelawareDonna(7A)

Don't rub it in - ha ha! Zone 7A ain't so bad.

DD

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 1:27PM
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