Which varieties grow to 12 inches only?

prairiemoon2 z6 MASeptember 22, 2013

I have a narrow, 12ft wide (no, 12 inches wide) bed in dry shade that gets a little late afternoon sun. I'd like to add some miniatures, but in the past, one miniature grew to standard size. I don't know the name of it, sorry. With that experience, I just want to be careful not to have that happen again, because I don't have the room in this location.

This post was edited by prairiemoon2 on Sun, Sep 22, 13 at 9:54

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Pieter zone 7/8 B.C.

What do you mean by '12 inches': height or width?

Here are some lists to guide you, by leaf size.

Very Small Hostas, Miniature Hostas.

It's a fair assumption that smaller leaves lead to plants with smaller clump sizes.


    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 9:11AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Oh, I'm sorry I made a typo, I meant to say the bed was 12 inches wide not 12 feet wide. It is the width I am concerned with. Thanks for the link.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 9:53AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Prairiemoon , the list Pieter sent of mini should do the trick in finding just what you need. I too never realized there were that many .

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 10:37AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Hi, I see from the 'Miniature Hostas' that a miniature hosta is smaller than I need, at 6 inches. So, I did a little searching and so far the best I could find is the catalog of Plant Delights that gives detailed info on each plant including the width and height expected. They do have a list of 'small' hostas that might fit what I need a little better.

If anyone has any personal experience with growing small hostas, I'd love to hear about it.

Here is a link that might be useful: Plant Delights / Small Hostas

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 10:45AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

How many hosta are you intending to plant in that area? How long is the bed?

A nice collection, with different variegation, from the Mouse family might be a good choice. For example Mighty Mouse and Frosted Mouse Ears with Blue Mouse Ears between would give you a nice variety. Typically they have thicker leaves and potentially hold up better than some of the thinner leaved varieties.

Another thought is to plant some upright hosta with rippled edges between mounding types.

Remember that smalls can get 20" wide, so watch the descriptions.

Minis for me seem to be a little delicate, imo.

I've never ordered from Plant Delights, so I have no opinion on that.


    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 11:08AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hi. Is your narrow bed something like between a walkway and the foundation of a building? How is it set up? Any shade at all during the afternoon? Is it under a roof dripline?

Some that have worked wonderfully for me among the smalls are
Verna Jean (white edges, very strong grower)
Gold Drop
Tick Tock
White Dove (fairly expensive)
Little Gold Spot
Grand Tiara
Sugarbabe (fragrant and small)
Invincible (fragrant and fertile too)

And, about Plant Delights Nursery (referred to generally as PDN)...I've ordered all sorts of plants from them for years, and I love the humor of Tony Avent in his plant descriptions.. However, I placed my first hosta order ever with them back in spring 2010, and of the 7 or 8 hosta that I ordered then, 3 turned out to be NOIDS, not at all what I'd ordered. While I've ordered from them since then, never again have I ordered hosta from them (and I now own a little more than 400 hosta). For one thing, they are more expensive than other places that I really like and have had great accuracy in getting what I ordered as well as healthy plants for a much cheaper price.

Your mileage may vary.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 11:28AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Deb, I was planning on maybe one on each end of this âÂÂbedâ to anchor it and I will have ferns and epimedium along the bed.

I do like the Mouse series, from photos IâÂÂve seen and I agree about thicker leaves and I see they are just about the size I need. Thanks.

I also like the idea of the upright rippled edges too to make more interest.

Moccasinlanding, In 2010, we created this narrow bed, really, that size can barely be called a bed (g), which is along the length of the side of a garage. No foundation though. And it is on the North side. It gets some sun late in the afternoon, so I donâÂÂt think it is exactly due north. There is a gutter above the bed, not a drip line and yes, there is a large Maple about 20ft away with some of the branches over one end of the garage. It gets pretty dry there so I have to be careful to water. IâÂÂd add a soaker hose, but not sure I have room for one.

Here is a photo of how it looked when we created it back in 2010. Since then IâÂÂve added ferns and lamium, heucheras. The lamium is still there, but the white coloring has greened up some and itâÂÂs not spreading. The heucheras have gotten eaten by something and are in decline. The Japanese Painted ferns are doing okay and what has surprised me is a Maidenhair fern is doing okay too, which I thought it would be too dry there for it. So since it is so dry, IâÂÂve decided to add some epimediums, which I have a number of that I can divide and add here this Fall. I am going to add compost. I will wait for spring to add the hostas. Epimediums are pretty boring most of the year, but they will do fine there, so the hostas hopefully will give more interest.

Thanks for your experiences with Plant Delights Nursery, I haven't ordered from them before. I've actually picked up a few random hosta at a local plant sale that worked out great for me for under $10 each, including 'June', my favorite. But to get the specific varieties I am looking for, I realize I will probably have to order from somewhere. The concern for me, is getting a hosta with a virus, so that was going to be my next question, are there any companies that are testing for viruses and/or any recommended nurseries to purchase healthy hostas?

Thanks very much for the list of hostas.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 12:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Prarie moon, I have a similar bed between a path and my garage. I use smalls, if they get too big you can divide them. I also like the "abundant garden" look so I let them drip over onto the path. If you like that look too you can go a little over a foot. Some I am using are Heart Song, High Society, and Tickle Me Pink.

Happy planting,

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 1:11PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Thanks Beverly, I see that 'High Society' is a sport of 'June' which is one of my favorite Hostas at the moment.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 1:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

We are a large group of enablers here at GWHostaforum :-) You asked and you shall receive:

I'm sure there are many great places to order from but imo, Hallson Gardens would be my first choice. They are wonderful and the orders I have received from their nursery have been top of the line:


I just got an order from Green Mountain Hosta after another member had good luck with them. The hosta look really healthy and I have them potted up for now. They will winter in my unheated garage:


I won some great hosta during the Hosta Library Auction from Naylor Creek Nursery. I haven't received them as of yet, but I'm confident, from hearing other members experiences with NC, they will be terrific hosta as well:



Copy and paste each 'url' above to go to the nurseries and Hosta Library Auction.


    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 1:36PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

I see that Hallson Gardens tests for viruses. Thanks. I will take some time and look over all these nurseries.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 3:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

thanks for the picture that really helps!

always remember that horizontal size can be adjusted with spade, shovel, or trowel. its vertical size that you have little or no control over.

I am thinking tiaras in front of geisha and whirlwind, just off hand...

to say that Hallson Gardens is virus aware is understatement , Chris is one of the hosta virus instructors at Hosta college.



    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 3:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

thanks for the picture that really helps!

always remember that horizontal size can be adjusted with spade, shovel, or trowel. its vertical size that you have little or no control over.

I am thinking tiaras in front of geisha and whirlwind, just off hand...

to say that Hallson Gardens is virus aware is understatement , Chris is one of the hosta virus instructors at Hosta college.



    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 3:50PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Thank you HH, for the other suggestions for hosta varieties. Yes, I was thinking that too, that you start out small and it takes awhile for them to reach their mature size and by then you could divide it.

Good to know about Hallson Gardens!

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 6:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bkay2000(8a TX)

Invincible is not that small, even if that's how it's labeled. Mine is 2' across in a pot.

As to HVX, I think most all the mail order "hosta guys" listed in the link below are clean for viruses. The key to having clean hosta is buying your starts from a clean source. The main wholesale sources that I know about that test for HVX are Walters, Q&Z and Made in the Shade (? - maybe something else in the shade). Most all the "hosta guys" buy from them.

The HVX problem mostly comes when a nursery buys from European sources. They are cheaper, so those are the ones that end up at Home Depot and Lowe's (and other big box stores). In our part of the country, the small Mom and Pop wholesale nurseries that do many types of plants buy European as well. Their plants end up in local, individually owned nurseries. At least, that's where I acquired my first (and only, I hope) HVX infected plant.

Everyone loves Hallson's. Steve did a thing last year on the best online nurseries that I linked to below.

I haven't had many small hosta. An old one that I had that did well for me was Diamond Tiara.

Maples are something I have not personally experienced. However, I would think 20' would be close enough to have a root problem, especially if that the only place near it that is irrigated.

Good luck.


Here is a link that might be useful: Best places to buy hosta

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 7:10PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

For inexpensive & tough as nails--lancifolia. Lancifolia gets double bonus points for a great floral display late in the season.

The only downside is that it seems to be wabbits favorite hosta to munch on.

Scroll down to see the photo posted by SWMOgardens.

Here is a link that might be useful: SWMO Lancifolia

    Bookmark   September 23, 2013 at 8:37AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Having trouble getting my server to go to Photobucket. I really saw no pictures in that thread you linked to, Ci.

I like Lancifolia too, and also Ventricosa. But Ventricosa is rather larger than 12 inches.

One that might wind up larger than the 12" but extremely beautiful is Maui Buttercups. Mine made a beautiful creamy butter yellow in the spring, looked ratty for a brief time, and I moved it to a spot beneath the potted palms. And there, with morning sun and afternoon shade, once again it is a totally new plant with fresh juicy leaves of that two-toned butter yellow.

If you keep the curve of the bed along that walkway, I'd recommend that in the middle where it bows away from the wall, that's where I'd put the most outstanding of all the hosta, something that is a bit taller than the others, and if it were me, that would be a golden leafed hosta.

Which one I could not say, since you're looking for those which stay within the 12" range I assume. And none of my hosta are mature, plus they are in pots. So my experiences are not as applicable to your question.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2013 at 12:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
josephines123 z5 ON Canada

In addition to previous suggestions, here are a few more for you to mull over.

I second the 'lancifolia'*** recommendation...if she is allowed to dominate in size, she would make a great specimen..makes a beautiful mound.

Vanilla Cream***
Shiny Penny
Golden Teacup
English Sunrise***
Crepe Suzette
Tiny Tears***
Blue Arrow or Blue Cadet*** are some I would suggest that would fit into your garden.

BA and BC will exceed the width but it will likely take a couple of years for any of them to growth such a size that you will have to divide.

One thing to keep in mind, IMO is that quoted dimensions will vary from grower to grower depending on growing conditions. You may end up with smaller sized which would work in your favour. If larger, you can opt to do one of two things, or both:

1. Enlarge your perimeter slightly to accommodate the hosta...should be manageable to ease rocks back starting at about 1-2 feet from your gate...even an extra 4-6 inches would work out nicely....you could leave your outside curve (walking path) as is...it would still be wide enough.
2. Divide your hosta

I would also suggest a centered specimen like Moc already suggested, a spiller for the front or something more upright that has a small footprint like Silver Star*** (it seems to be a slow grower...may or may not appeal to you in structure) a spiller would work at the feet of Silver Star within the space allocated. Just a few suggestions for your consideration. :-)

Note: Hosta with asterisks grow in my garden

Whatever you decide upon, I think you have a sweet garden there! :-)


This post was edited by josephines67 on Mon, Sep 23, 13 at 12:51

    Bookmark   September 23, 2013 at 12:45PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Bk, thanks for that link, seems like you all made an effort to consolidate that information all in one thread which is very helpful.

And I love your explanation of how the HVX problem has become a problem and where the virus came from. It helps to understand what happened and what to avoid. I have actually stopped buying anything at the box stores. I decided I wanted to support local companies and quality mail order and that in doing so, I would be finding more of what I really want too.

Yes, Maples are something IâÂÂve been trying to work with for about 10 years, so I understand the problem. I also have Silver Maples, multiple mature Silver Maples in neighboring yards, close to my lot line so it is a big issue for me. I was not even planning on putting Hostas under the two Maples I have but one day I had a variegated Hosta that someone gave me and it was one that I wasnâÂÂt that crazy about and was going to give it away, but on impulse I thought it might brighten up a dark corner under the tree so I tried it there, like 5 feet away from the trunk, with very little soil prep and to my surprise it has done very well and didnâÂÂt even have a hole in the leaves this year. So, I am experimenting at this point.

Cilantro, Thanks for that link, tough as nails is something that might help me out.

MLanding, Thanks for offering your experienced eye to consider what might work the best in that bed. I am planning on keeping the curve to the bed and I agree with you, that the middle of the bed needs to be a focal point and the best hosta should go there. I do have space right in the middle of that bed right now too. And I do enjoy Yellow Hostas, so IâÂÂll take a look at that Buttercups. Thanks for pointing out trying to get one taller, because I never think about the height of a hosta, but I can see where it could get pretty boring to have hostas lined up in a row all the same height.

Jo, thank you for a nice list of suggested hostas and your ideas about how to work with that bed. I can see bringing out the edge of the curve in the bed a little more too. It is a pain-in-the-neck bed at that size, but it looks a whole lot better than what was there before which was a roof without a gutter where the water dripped into gravel below and water collecting in the area that is now the pathway. I hope I can get something going with the addition of Hostas.

Wow, I didn't realize how much help I was going to get! Everyone has gone out of their way to offer a lot of helpful suggestions along with the names of Hostas to consider. I really appreciate it, thanks very much!

    Bookmark   September 23, 2013 at 3:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Mmmm, I'm going to throw in the names of two hosta which are not smalls, but which you might wish to find a spot for somewhere in your garden. Both tend to be yellow. Both are fragrant.

Prairie Moon (yeah, you got one named for you!)
Prairieland Memories (good vibes with this one.)

PMoon is a medium, I do not think I have it.

But I got PMemories this June, and it is doing okay, but not looking golden yet. I'll wait for next year to see how it fits with the other golds in my garden.

Prairie Angel got it in June too.

Check out both of them in the Hosta Library. Hope you have room for them somewhere.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2013 at 6:07PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Told ya we were a large group of enablers!

    Bookmark   September 23, 2013 at 9:15PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

MLanding, a 'prairie moon' hosta? Nice! I'll have to look for that. Fragrant flowers is one thing I do look for. My husband is very interested in fragrance. Some of these names are so interesting, I'd almost want to have them just for the name, lol.

Deb, I think I said in another thread, I only have about 7 hostas at the moment and plenty of shade, so I have room for a few more. :-) I can only imagine how many hostas all of you have.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2013 at 3:30AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ahhhhh, Prairiemoon, I knew if I slowly dragged a pot of those "Prairie...." hosta past you, it would evoke a response! hehehe

I'm that way about names myself, love a significant name.

And now I notice that you are in Mass.....which is where I started my passion for hosta, in Chelmsford, next to Lowell. The only hosta I have that were not mail ordered were those I got from Bob Seawright at his nursery in Carlisle. He also has day lilies. If you are at the roundabout, you take the road past the library toward Billrica, and it is not far from there. Huge oak trees, great mature hosta beneath them, and a big field mostly daylilies. If you want to see mature hosta his display garden even in September when I saw it was awesome. Of course, that is the only time I was in a hosta garden, I am flying on faith here.

Interesting thing about the visit to Seawrights. The missus noticed my accent and asked where I was from, and it turns out they are from Mississippi themselves. So we had a great discussion of the book about the 1927 Miss River flood and other regional stuff. Bob is a tall stately man, and Missus is tall and thin as well, with great reserve and elegant manners.

If you seek local sources for your hosta, ask Steve-Mass which places he frequents. His place is tour-garden worthy, and he really knows the places to find great hosta.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2013 at 12:47PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

MLanding, you did get me with the Prairie names. I know there is a Prairie Moon Rose which I don't have a place for, but I do have room for a hosta. :-)

Chelmsford is a nice area. Has some spaces that look almost rural. They've opened up a Weston Nurseries in that town now and there is an Agway there, that we've made the trip to visit.

Yes, I've shopped at Bob Seawright's. I haven't bought a Hosta there, but now that you mention it, I do remember that garden display of hostas there. Impressive! Of course, it helps that they are on the route to a great ice cream shop. (g) It's been awhile since I've been that way. Nice that you ran into someone from your home state!

I have seen photos of Steve_Mass's garden that he's posted on the NE forum and always find they are a treat. Love his hosta photos and find it interesting that he seems to be creating his own hybrids. I hadn't thought to check with him, so thanks for the reminder.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2013 at 1:07PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Actually Alabama is my home state. I married a MA man in 2006. Of course, we were engaged 50 years ago, and finally got things right. I am very happy I had the chance to garden even for a short time in a four-season climate.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2013 at 4:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
bkay2000(8a TX)

Mocc, I thought Seawright was the source of one of your diseased plants (nematodes?). Please correct me if I'm wrong.


    Bookmark   September 24, 2013 at 6:43PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hi BK.

Yes last year two plantaginea had nematodes. They were from Seawright. However, only those two had the nems. And, I gave them the bleach treatment (20% bleach w water for 30 minutes) and they survived.

When I brought them home in pots in 2011, they were fine. I repotted them for 2012, and that is when they showed nematodes. I could not verify the source of the nems, and I learned a bit more about the way nems work. This year, none of the hosta from Seawright had signs of nems.

I do (or did) have another one which showed nem infection this year, and isolated it but did not do the treatment. I decided to just let it go and not try to salvage it, since it was not a fragrant hosta. Where did the nems come from? Probably from the garden here, although it is not running rampant.

If you recall, I also had 3 hosta that I was very proud of which wound up with a virus this year. It was not HVX, and so it could have come from other species of plants. I got rid of those too. None of the three was from Seawright.

Seawright does not mail order.

    Bookmark   September 24, 2013 at 9:12PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

MLanding, sorry I misread your post. Alabama must have quite a different growing climate than Massachusetts. IâÂÂve never gardened anywhere but here. My family did move to Florida once with the intention of permanently relocating, but after 9 months, we moved home again. Missing family and friends, the heat and missing the four seasons was a major reason. So that is my only experience with hot weather. Being born in Alabama, I imagine you are quite used to it.

A little belated, but congratulations on your wedding! That is amazing that you had been engaged so long ago. It must be quite a story. :-)

Wow, I just did a search for SeawrightâÂÂs to see if they had a website and they doâ¦..with a notice that they were closing at the end of 2012!! Thought youâÂÂd like to know. :-)

Here is a link that might be useful: Seawright Gardens

    Bookmark   September 25, 2013 at 8:53AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Prairiemoon, I did not realize they'd closed. They were up in age to be running a business sort of adjacent to their home, and of course would not be selling such prized valuable land in Carlisle, where I think each new place is about 5 acres in size. But they had a huge property there, much larger than 5 acres!

Well,when we return to the area, I'll check on them. Very "with it" couple. Hope all is well for them. And thank you for that info.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2013 at 11:46AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
prairiemoon2 z6 MA

MLanding, Your welcome, such a small world, glad you were able to find out what was going on with them.

And thank you all for your help and enthusiasm with my hosta project! I hope I will make it back in the spring with new photos of an updated bed. :-)

    Bookmark   September 25, 2013 at 5:45PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Shiny-leaved Hosta
I am SOOO bored watching snow melt! Not fast enough...although...
josephines123 z5 ON Canada
Spring Pips Showing-time span from first plant to last?
Especially for those of you with a large amount of...
Advice for a Newbie Hosta Gardener
This past fall I planted four Blue Angel hostas on...
Is this normal for Guacamole?
This is a closeup photo of my Guacamole last year....
newhostalady Z6 ON, Canada
got pots ...
after a week in the 40s and 50s.. i can finally see...
ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5
Sponsored Products
Glomar Wall Mounted 1-Light Outdoor Semi Gloss White Large Oval Cage Bulk Head
$41.99 | Home Depot
Pelle Designs | Large Bubble Chandelier
LBL Lighting | Constellation Chandelier
MUD Teacups & Coffee Cups - MUD Australia
$22.00 | HORNE
Palm 7 Piece Outdoor Patio Sectional Set in Espresso Turquoise
$1,859.00 | LexMod
Single Lever Wall Mounted Basin Diverter With Long Casted Spout
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™