H. 'Whisky Sour' is...

irawon(5a Ottawa)August 11, 2014

so refreshing and aptly named.

That's what I thought this morning during my walk-about looking for animal-made holes near hosta roots. (Usually find at least one). I like the green buds, nodding gracefully against the chartreuse leaves. Ever since Jon's thread on flower scapes, I've become more observant of flower colour and shape. While some hostas are in a declined state, WS is still pristine...no decoloration and no slug holes. I wonder whether there is a corelation between late blooming and staying power.

Anyone care to comment?

Close-up of the scapes coming up.

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irawon(5a Ottawa)

Flower scape close-up

    Bookmark   August 11, 2014 at 5:15PM
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sherrygirl zone5

In my garden in 5 the late blooming plants ALWAYS look better than earlier bloomers. Doesnt seem to matter what kind of plant. Just my experience here. Hurray for the late bloomers!!!!

Sherry

    Bookmark   August 11, 2014 at 5:45PM
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bkay2000(8a TX)

It's been said that hosta start putting all their energy into roots after they bloom. I would assume that means they go downhill in looks, i.e., no new leaves. Mine generally do, anyway.

bk

    Bookmark   August 11, 2014 at 6:36PM
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irawon(5a Ottawa)

Hi Sherry,
Your comment about late-blooming non-hosta perennials made me examine the correlation question a bit further because I've noticed too, that the late blooming perennials seem to stay nicer looking longer but I've never really compared hostas to them...don't know why? On the other hand, I've noticed also, that some of the early bloomers such as my new hellebores (planted in the spring) and my bunnera 'Looking Glass' still have attractive foliage. Yarrow 'Moonshine' keeps its attractive foliage after the first flush of blooms in early July.

I looked at Don Rawson's list of early blooming hostas and found that some on the list look good in my garden now (Paradigm, Brother Stefan, Blaze of Glory, Heat Wave) whereas Katsurawaga Beni , (which blooms in September/October in southern Wisconsin) started going down-hill in July.

I googled the question but found no answers. Since the exceptions prove the rule I would think it would follow that there are more complicated factors influencing the staying power of hostas: probably genetics and envirnoment.

Thanks for your comments, Sherry, they led me to read some interesting articles on forcing hosta blooms etc. on the internet.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 4:51PM
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irawon(5a Ottawa)

Bkay,

Thanks for the info on root growth. Looks like the dormant season is soon upon us, all downhill from now on. And I have so much more I still want to accomplish in my hosta beds.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 5:11PM
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don_in_colorado

Nice-looking greenie, irawon.

Don B.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2014 at 4:19AM
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josephines123 z5 ON Canada

Irawon, I have found this to be an exceptional growing year..and the 'exceptional' applies in both directions-good and not so good.

What is outstanding so far is that just about every hosta is as unblemished (chew marks) now as it was earlier in the season. THE most exceptional plants are the white centered ones; I.e., Fire and Ice and Ann Kulpa as they are supposed to be notorious for melt out. I haven't been out yet this morning after the downpour yesterday but I assume it's status quo.

The hostas that are finished blooming here are doing really well and don't show decline - again, I'm baffled but very pleased and pleasantly surprised.
I'd go so far as to say I can't see a difference in either pre-bloom or after-bloom!

As far as other perennials go, I've learned over the years that once a perennial finished blooming it spent all it's remaining energy on producing seed so the plant naturally declined thereafter. That is one of the reasons I dead-head frequently...to keep it looking fresh and to keep producing more flowers. Once you allow a plant to start producing seed the production of flowers becomes sporadic (pinks, carnations, lupine, yarrow, etc, etc,).

My Achillea 'Moonbeam' foliage is a lovely blue/green/grey and also stays pretty throughout - needs lots of sun to stay that way.

Now, lest anyone think ALL my hostas are pristine....one of my Katsuragawa Beni has all yellowed tips!!! The others are just great but this potted one looks very strange. I have no idea what happened to it - it is difficult for me to miss watering anything as my process of watering follows a methodical pattern for the various areas. Aristocrat started beautifully this spring, then it developed rusty looking edges, some quite fine, others a bit more pronounced...at first look it would appear as lack of watering...it is in the ground now and perking up a bit. It is on the side of the house and not in my face, so I contend with it, lol.

As you commented, Irawon, the early decline (of some hostas after flowering) towards dormancy may be partially due to genetics.....just as it it is with humans.

I would like to come back as a June hosta! This beauty, regardless of what stage she is at, just keeps on looking gorgeous until late into Fall! Nothing gets her down. From spring right up to dormancy this hosta just keeps getting prettier and prettier changing her tones - whether more muted or brighter.

Time for coffee, a walk-about and some fresh pics.

I don't have a Whiskey Sour but it has a pleasing form and soft appearance in your picture. There is something very soothing ... to behold a lovely all-green hosta.

Jo

    Bookmark   August 13, 2014 at 9:14AM
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irawon(5a Ottawa)

Don, Whiskey Sour is viridescent. It's remained practically blemish free through the growing seasons since I got it in 2011. Here's a pic from June.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2014 at 1:02AM
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irawon(5a Ottawa)

Hi Jo, I read your post a day ago but haven't been able to reply. I've had a lot of running around to do ... have started personal training sessions with my daughter three times a week. She gives homework. Anyway, better late than never.

As far as Whiskey Sour is concerned, it's been a really good performer since I got it. Slugs have left it alone, which has puzzled me, because the leaves aren't particularly thick.

I find it interesting that you thought that maybe your Katsurawaga Beni wasn't getting enough water. My husband was turning the sprinklers on twice a day and I asked him to stop, because I thought it was getting too much water (worried about crown rot). Some of my other hostas were getting yellow leaves too: Emerald Crown, Clovelly, Baby Bunting ... strange.

We must be talking about the same plant achillea/yarrow "Moonshine'. I have some growing with my hostas. I like it because it's really drought tolerant. I also like the shorter rebloom. Here's a picture of it with Avocado after a heavy rainfall in June.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2014 at 1:35AM
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don_in_colorado

I like this variety a lot, irawon. I guess I'll 'have' to get one : )

Don B.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2014 at 12:12PM
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