Optimism

mosswitchAugust 11, 2012

In the depths of the drought and heat, somewhere there lives in me a perennial optimist. Next year will be better. I just sent in my fall hosta order (sigh).

Delta Dawn

Gunsmoke

Krossa Regal

Neat and Tidy

Pandoras Box

Potomac Pride

Tenryu

Zounds

Lakeside Looking Glass

Tropical Dancer

Of course, the Naylor Creek catalog hasn't arrived yet. I am sure there will be more.

I plan to do the bulk of my planting this fall, so they will be established by the time the next summer drought hits.

The hosta society auction is September 1......I have no will power.

Sandy

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Moccasin(z9aMobileAL)

Sandy-(Witch).....

I have only two of the ones you ordered recently. Pandora's Box and Zounds. I like Zounds because it is a strong grower, but had no idea it would become LARGE. That I could NOT tell from the way it looks now. However, it is a constantly gold/yellow hosta and I wonder when it will show its nature.
Maybe next year, when I put it in a larger pot? Or maybe it is one which needs to be in the spacious ground to stretch its muscles and show what it can do.

Pandora's Box is a tiny thing. I have it in a shallow bowl with three other hosta, sitting on my deck under the umbrella. I recently added a seeping self-watering terra cotta bottle (Arizona Pottery sells them as "ollas")and as long as I remember to keep that bottle full, all the hosta in it are thriving. When I dug into the center of the flat bowl to place the olla, I was surprised at how extensive the roots of those miniature hosta were. The hosta may be small things, but they know what they are looking for.

I know you will be uploading school pictures of new arrivals when the time come?

My latest two orders were not for hosta, but for dwarf pomegranates from Logees in CT, and for daylilies from Wild. My parrots love pomegranates. I also found at Lowes a dwarf pink plumeria (frangipani), and at WalMart a heliconia (looks like a bird of paradise when in bloom)...I was picking up bags of orchid bark/charcoal on sale, bought them out, to mix in my hosta pots--definitely not getting any hosta from those places. And, wound up with many more plastic Chinese-made pots to take care of my future hosta orders. Those stores think the gardening season is winding down, little do they know the nature of hosta addicts.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 12:36PM
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ninamarie(4Ont.)

Well, you have got until fall to build up your soil. I hope your hosta growing weather improves and I'm glad you got your mojo back.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 12:38PM
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ctopher_mi

Hi Sandy,

I think we all need to be optimistic at this point, but unfortunately fall is not the best time to be planting, and I would never recommend planting minis like Pandora's Box in the fall. Hostas actually only put out root growth during the heat of the summer, and in fall after things cool off the root growth shuts down and won't start up again until late next spring or early summer, depending on how next spring's weather shapes up. Putting them in now would be better since they would have another month or so to drop down roots before winter. I'm busy planting for the spring myself right now and hope to get everything planted by labor day (though it may not work out as planned).

Sorry to be pessimistic about your plan but would hate to have you lose your new additions over the winter.

Chris

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 1:10PM
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mosswitch

Chris, I value your opinion, and Pandora will go into a pot for spring, but we do have a good three months still of growing season here in SW Missouri before things really cool down.

It's a little cooler here this week ( in the 90's) but we are still having a drought, no rain yet to speak of unless you want to call the 1/8" last week "rain".

We stll have the rest of August and September, and most of October to get through before we will likely have what you would call fall
weather. I have the best luck planting hostas here between now and mid-September, or in early March while they are still dormant. By the time May comes around when spring shipping starts, it is usually already pretty hot here and too late as bare root plants really struggle.

Sandy

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 1:44PM
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ctopher_mi

Hi,

I was wondering about that. We tend to cool down in early October so I shoot for 4 weeks in the ground before the cool down.

As for shipping, lots of places will ship a lot earlier than May.

Sorry to hear that your drought continues. We are finishing up 3 days of rain, the first we've had in a month, and it has been great to get a relief from having to water so much.

Good luck,

Chris

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 2:06PM
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bkay2000(8a TX)

I'm with Sandy on that. Fall is the best time to plant lots of things here. We plant trees, shrubs and other perennials as soon as the heat breaks. The fall is generally fairly rainy which gives everything time to get it's roots established before freezing weather hits (about Thanksgiving). Also, as Sandy said, that way they are fully established by next summer. I, too, don't get much growth out of hosta that are shipped in May. It's already hot, so they just sit there.

bkay

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 2:08PM
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mosswitch

Now I've done it, gone to Hallson's and ordered more hostas (would have been more still but most of what I would have ordered was out of stock), sedums, a couple irises and a hearth cricket.

Somebody needs to take this computer away from me.

Sandy

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 3:37PM
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mosswitch

Moon Shadow
Purple Lady Fingers
Luna Moth
Independence
London Fog

Sandy

Oh yeah, and

Iris foetidissima
Dwarf iris "Smart"
Sedum "Summer Glory"

Ok done now. Going outside to water, no computer out there, haha.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 3:50PM
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Moccasin(z9aMobileAL)

Truly I am puzzled by the different results folks have with bare root hosta. MOST of the ones I have, are new this year.

I have a very few from May 2010 (from Plant Delights Nursery in NC, Tony Avent's place). I have some from Bridgewood, Hornbaker, Green Hill/Solberg, and Bob Seawright which stayed in containers all last winter because they were delivered here bare root in late August/September. But the balance of the hosta, some 250 of them, arrived from April/May up until last week. Bare root. The Purple Lady Fingers I got a week ago shot up 3 scapes that are opening already, and little Emily Dickinson looking too fragile to be left alone without a babysitter, is also scaping on me....what is that about, she is a fragrant little child and I moved her to more sun already.

I'm very puzzled, you see, because I am enjoying great new growth, the summer flush, even the plants which looked awful two weeks ago are rejuvenated--except for Patriot and Satisfaction-NOID. And my Eskimo Pie is even rallying again, hopefully soon enough to survive the winter with a lot of sustaining root growth. Moving pots around seems like my life's work these days. The fragrant hosta are all looking fine fine fine, and I am more deeply committed to them than ever before.

Some of the hosta have zone 9 shown as their most southerly limit, so think it indicates I have some chance of success with them. For sure, I have lucked out this year with all the rain we've gotten. Mosquitos are terrible, but the hosta are putting up scapes almost overnight. Our temps in the day this week are low 90s perhaps high 80s, and at night we make it down into the 77-80 degree range. This is possibly enough of a temp change to stimulate them to bloom bloom bloom. Even if they are young and immature, I'm pleased to note increasing numbers of scapes. Fragrant and otherwise! But my heart is with the fragrant ones.

So far I see no seed pods, but that will come in time. And I'm learning as they grow. Some will need much larger pots next spring, when I see the number of eyes poking out of the ground. Like Fried Bananas is covering its pot, so is Royal Standard, Fragrant Dream, Orange Marmalade.

Guess you might say I am optimistic, provided I can do all the heavy grunt work to be able to walk through the muddy soggy garden and get rid of the fire ants and the ever present weeds.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 9:47PM
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thisismelissa

ooooh. You've got it bad! Pretty amazing given that many have waning garden motivation as the season progresses.

Delta Dawn -- One of my newest favs. Bought it on a whim at a local garden place. Coloring is quite unique and it seems to be vase shaped.

Gunsmoke -- AWESOME! You'll love the coloring and leaf shape. Good grower for me too.

Krossa Regal -- I have 2 of these. Planted them in the back of the garden to hide the rabbit fence. LOVE âÂÂ¥

Pandoras Box -- I've killed 2 of these. I'm told they do better with constraint. Many choose to keep this one in a container forever. I won't try it again.

Potomac Pride -- I don't have this one, yet. But it's lovely when mature. Amazing dark green. But it's a slow grower. So I'd pick a spot and not move it.

I don't know anything about the others.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 8:13AM
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mosswitch

I killed my last Pandora's box, it was doing fine where it was but I got the notion it would be better in another spot. It wasn't and expressed its displeasure by committing planticide. :( I'll know better next time.

Sandy

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 9:48AM
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Moccasin(z9aMobileAL)

Melissa, if you have the Gunsmoke, I'd like to see it sometime. Guess I'll do a search to see if its picture is already uploaded to the forum. I have plans for a Krossa Regal very soon. Potomac Pride just doesn't do anything for me, so it is not on my short list....or NOT so short list....but Delta Dawn, love those Olga hosta!

My minis like the bowls they are in presently, and like Chris pointed out, they are making roots all through that soil! So Pandora's Box, which has leaves the size of my thumbnail, will stay right where it is, doing fine there even though not as much white centering as I expected.

Actually, if I can keep them from overheating in the pots, I like to have them close by, sitting around the deck, so I always have them in view as I come and go. It's easy to top up the little seeping water bottle, which is seeping more than I thought it would, and I like the looks of it in the bowl. Better than pouring water around the plants, to put it in the clay jar and give the water slowly to the little guys.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 10:17AM
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