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So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Posted by dublinbay z6 KS (My Page) on
Thu, May 31, 12 at 20:34

I've been doing a lot of hosta research the past couple weeks, including a whole bunch of older posts on this forum. It seems to me that several years ago there were lots of posters moaning and groaning (and cursing) Gt Expectations--seems like a lot of them were growing poorly and even declining and dying. Yet, when I was looking at posted pictures for the past couple years, I was seeing healthy, thriving Gt Expectations--quite a few of them, in fact.

Oddest thing is that no one is commenting on these more recent pictures of thriving Gt Expectations. I'd really like to hear from you gardeners who have evidently had great success growing Gt Expectations. If earlier hosta gardeners were having so much trouble with this hosta, what are more recent gardeners doing to make their Gt Expectations thrive with no apparent troubles?

If you can't tell, I've fallen in love with Gt Expectations, so share your secrets of successfully growing it with me--OK? Thanks!

Kate


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

I still after 4 years refer to mine as "Failed Expectations". I did move mine this spring about 8 feet over in a bed which should allow for more sun. I hope that move will allow me to call her by the proper name some time soon.

Ed


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

I'm one of the unsuccessful GE growers...3 times unsuccessful.

I can't speak for others so I'll give you my take...

It's lovely...obviously, because I tried 3 times.

I think it's nice to see them. I do an internal "ooooh", but at the same time I don't spend mental time on the plant because I'm not putting out the effort or cash a 4th time.

I've been off & on this forum since 2002. People have experimented and discussed GE forever, and the conclusions after all the experiments all go back to the same thing...it's a touchy plant. I'd rather enjoy the growing experience with nice plants than play nursemaid.
Gayle


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Mine are young yet, but seem to be doing well. I have 2, one in the backyard & one in the front. Both receive sun most of the morning, full shade in the afternoon, and get lots of water.

The one on the left was planted in 2009, in clay soil. It's growing, but slowly.
The one on the right was planted in 2011, and is in lovely, loose soil. It's already bigger than the other one.

Photobucket

So my recommendation is morning sun, afternoon shade, lots of water, & loose rich soil. And, if it's happy, don't ever move it!

Wendy


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

This is my second one,but it is growing well,after moving it here two years ago. They do like morning sun,and afternoon shade as someone else noted. That's where this one of mine is located. Take a look. Phil

Photobucket


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

I'm willing to take advice from anyone who is managing to grow Gt Expectations successfully, so anyone who wants to add something, feel free to join in.

Since two successful growers advise morning sun/afternoon shade in loose, rich soil, I have changed by design and moved (on paper, that is--I don't have the plant yet--should come in next week) Gt Expectations to the one spot I have open that exactly meets those requirements. So glad I got this feedback from you before I planted it somewhere else!

The three other hostas I've ordered (Cathedral Windows, Gypsy Rose, and Rainforest Sunrise) will go in the area that gets more sun at mid-day and shade/dappled shade at other times. That should work out nicely (I hope). If anyone has any special advice on those three, please let me know.

This is fun. I use to grow hostas. Then too much sun came into my garden--still have a Gold Standard and a planteginea (how do you spell that one?), however, and a couple I no longer remember the names of, but they barely survived, certainly didn't thrive (a couple others didn't survive, unfortunately). Now I have more shady spots returning to a corner of my garden, so I'm eager to get some new hostas going there. Appreciate any help you can give me.

Kate


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

This is the third year for mine and it has a bit of late afternoon/early evening sun. The soil here is very sandy so it has been amended with compost but I haven't had to do anything special. I fertilize each of my hostas with slow release 10 10 10 in the spring and spread a little compost around each one and water regularly.


GreatExpectations


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Here's mine, also in it's third year. Mine is grown in conditions similar to Paul's -- late afternoon and evening sun.

Photobucket

Gesila


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Well, now, this is interesting--2 posters say morning sun, 2 others say late afternoon sun. They do seem to agree a loose growing medium is needed, however.

So what about the sun? How many hours would you say?

In the meantime, I'm swooning over the lovely pics of Gt. Expectations! Isn't it a beauty!

Kate


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

I'm having good success with mine.
It gets plenty of morning sun.
Mine probably gets 4-5 hours of morning sun, but not all in one shot.


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

I bought 2 GEs last September (small with 1 eye) and planted in a place where they get sun all morning until 1 pm, then late afternoon sun after 5 pm. I have clay soil so amended it with some good top soil (~ 4-6 inches), covered with regular mulch. I did not do anything special. Watered a couple times first couple weeks then left alone for the winter. I also planted 2 Patriots, 2 august moons at the same location and same time. Now they all grow nicely and get bigger. The 2 GEs are biggeR than Patriots, and just slightly smaller than august moons (and August Moon grows fast). I did feed them a little bit slow release MG (the regular kind, I think all purpose 10-10-10).

The GEs started to form several buds already. The color of leaves is so beautiful....... So I plan to get a couple more for the front yard or split the existing ones in the fall (I divide hostas in October, plant the divisions, water for a couple times and leave them alone. They never fail). The only thing is that we had a few really hot days (upper 80s and 90s) last week. The center of the GE leaves got a little thin. But with this week's cool weather and rain, they revovered nicely. I did water them a couple times this year due to the hot weather last week, but nothing special and same treatment for all my other hostas.

I remember one gentle man who works at a nursery posted here a while ago. His advice is to plant them not too deep, plenty of sun and water. He said his customers had never failed growing GEs (I think he is from midwest).

Best of luck,
Vivian


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

I always like to repost this GREAT GE growing info when I find a new GE thread. It comes from GW member dhaven. Vivian, this may be the same person you are speaking of?
Also Vivian, curiously enough my GE is in nearly the exact same planting conditions/sun as yours, except I don't feed. Mine is also doing fairly well.
Michelle

PS - If dhaven still visits the forums, I'm sure pictures would be a real experience for the rest of us!

"dhaven:
Some varieties are very picky about growing conditions, and unless they are planted in optimum conditions, they will either remain small, or fade away and die. The best example of this I know of is Great Expectations, which also happens to be my favorite hosta. A great many people have lost this one, sometimes more than once. I have three very large mature plants, and they are the prettiest thing in the garden. It took some experimentation, but there are three things that GE absolutely must have to thrive. First, and most importantly, plant it shallowly. It's going to be a very large plant, so the natural inclination is to plant it deeply, but this will kill it faster than anything else. Plant it so shallowly you are convinced that it will tip over, and you've got it right. Secondly, it likes a lot of light. Dappled shade is ideal, but it will take several hours of direct sun, either morning or afternoon. Third, it likes a lot of water. If you give a GE all three of these things, you will increase your chances of growing it into an absolutely stunning plant.

If you want to try any of the hostas that have the reputation of being difficult, be prepared to try different locations and growing methods, and possibly go through several plants before you discover what works for that variety in your location. When you do find out what works, please share the information with the rest of us!"


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Kate - Have you "fallen in love" with GE's expected appearance, or with your eperience with Great Expectations?

As you can see, some people are having success with Great Expectations. While I am one who fell in love with the expectations I am NOT one of those who have had any successful personal experiences with the hosta. I have bought 5 over the years, working with 3 myself and giving 1 to each of my twin-daughters. None survived into their 4th season in any of our gardens. Historically mine increased in size from season 1 to 2 and then went steadily downhill until they disappeared.

I am not one to tell someone not to try something. I personally won't buy another one. There are too many similar looking hostas that are more dependible. Like Cathedral Windows, for example. If you are intent on working with GE by all means do it, do what you are doing in seeking all advice you can get, and do so with my best wishes for your success. When you have success, please post photos of your GE, and pass on what you have learned to others who would like to enjoy GE.

Les


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

I just love my 2 Great Expectations hosta. One I have had for several years, one of my first hosta, and one I got this year. The one I got this year I posted pics of recently, because it is such a beauty. I just hope it stands out like this every year. Here it is again:
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Also, my conditions meet those above, although by accident;) I am glad you posted this, now I know for sure it is in a great spot for it to succeed for years to come;) But, I will cross my fingers too!!

Gabby


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Lets see ...these three are on the north side of the house, just barely under the eaves of the roof.. They get some direct sunlight until maybe 8 am ? and then they are in a light shade from the house, no more water than any of my others .. Although I do on occasion give them some aquarium water...

I forgot to add I have thrown down some Diametrous earth? to hopefully hurt slugs and cutworms.. I had some left over from my aquarium days(its a filter item) so that is what the white powder is in some pics...

Photobucket

This one gets some direct sunlight from about 8-11 am, and is again just under the eaves , but on the south side of the house. This plant is actually stuck into a rock garden, with the bad type of matt under the rock, I have opened it up for it, and it does get rain unless the wind is blowing hard. It gets some Fish water as well now and then.
Photobucket

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the last plant is tucked up against my shrubs, and gets direct light from maybe just after dawn until 8 am, and then dappled light the rest of the day.. mostly shade. this plant darkens up a little and seems to grown bigger leaves. It also gets much more rain when it falls, and when there is a hard rain, a creek flows right behind it down the property line (over the grass). Also I THINK the neighbors sump pump drains within 8-10 feet of it...

it starts out Identical to the others, but after a month or two it doesn't stay as bright, I do think it is now the biggest of the five, and I spotted a new eye the other day.. unless I am confusing it with another plant...

Photobucket

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I might add ignorance may be bliss, because i bought them all cheap at a box store and didn't know about there reputation, or the fact that rock gardens with weed mat are poor habitat.

I just keep hoping they come up every spring, and will enjoy them until they don't .
Photobucket


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

It's raining here (hey!!) so I can't take a picture, but I've posted pics of my great Great Expectations in the past. It gets sun from 3:30 till 6:00, in clay soil originally amended with compost, now fertilized and mulched. Rarely given additional water.

My main hosta garden is on a hill beyond a pond. GE is probably 50 yards away from my house but so striking that it is readily identifiable even from that range (beats the 10 foot rule by a healthy margin). Nance


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

a couple observations

i have had 8 or 9 .. many gifts.. its carp .. and that is not cursing.. its a fish ...

second ... just go back to the top .. and look at the ZONE of all posters ... unless i missed something only one is warmer than z5 ... historically it seemed the vast majority of peeps who succeed were in MN and WI ... i always wondered if relatively cooler nights was the issue ... a period for it to recover the transpiring of the day ...

someone said: Well, now, this is interesting--2 posters say morning sun, 2 others say late afternoon sun. They do seem to agree a loose growing medium is needed, however.

==>>> morning.. afternoon.. its irrelevant ... the point is NOT IN THE SUN IN THE HOT PART OF THE DAY ...

the key.. IMHO ... is that the white center.. is a net negative on the plant... it produces no chlorophyll, so it weakens the plant ... and it cant move water in white tissue as effectively as green tissue ... since hosta transpire.. or sweat ... tissue that does not perform at peak efficiency ... is lost.. which in hosta mean .. burns out .. aka looks ratty ... [a hosta which loses more water than it can process in a given time frame.. eventually burns]

oh no.. coffee buzz hitting.. who knows were we will go next.. lol ...

it took me many failures to understand.. that i should NOT buy the babes with the biggest white center.. as far as i am concerned.. they are foo foo plants.. that only survive in prime conditions.. like a greenhouse.. i improved my success.. somewhat.. when i tried babes with the smallest white center.. there being more green to grow the roots.. to grow the plant.. and the white center followed.. its one reason dream weaver does better ... it has more green to grow the roots ...

back in the day.. i was buying 6 inch.. second year TC ... they all failed ... i once bought a mature clump with 20 divisions.. and it failed too ...

bottom line..its carp .. but most likely.. you all have to try at least one.. lol ...

ken


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

I have no problems with GE. They look beautiful. The one in morning sun and dappled shade has a darker center, has steady markings all year.
The one in more sun has brighter centers, gets more regular water from the vegetable garden, sits on a berm. That one has a second flush of leaves with streaks. It sits between H. montana 'On Stage' and H.'Abba Dabba Doo', also doing fine.
Bernd


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Interesting that most of the responses are from Zone 5 (including all the of failed experiences also). I appreciate all those responses, but now am wondering about the experiences of those in, say, Zone 6. Are there differences in how Gt Expectations grows in different zones?

This is all so helpful. Thanks for all the input. Anyone else? Please give your 2 cents also.

Kate


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Here's one I saw at a nursery near Hayward, Wisconsin. Seems to be doing fine several inches from a gravel road.

Great Expectations1


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see !!! see!!!

a braggart from MN showing us a WI plant.. [and note.. only able to brag they have the picture.. not the plant.. lol] ...

did i tell you????

in all my years .... i have never seen one like that.. ANYWHERE .. i think its fake.. lol

ken


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Actually, I just took that shot because it's a spot near our lake cabin in Wisconsin. And that's not the only big GE they have at that nursery.

I have one that's growing fairly well, but it takes a little time. Nowhere near as big as the one in the photo. May take a photo of mine today as I never seem to get around to taking photos. Definitely need to take one of the man-eating Sun Power.


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

ken-I follow your point regarding location. Two of my 3 failures were in northern Arkansas, zone 6A. One of my failures were in Illinois Z5B, and both daughters failed Great Expectations were also in 5B. Every one of mine were planted in different sun conditions from total high shade to dappled shade to several hours of morning sun. Watering varied also. One of mine was just beyond the drip line of a silver maple where a number of my hostas are doing magnificantly. Two had no shallow rooted trees any where near them. Two were in amended heavy clay dirt and one in my current coal dust dirt. To me, Great Expectastions is like Russian Roulette where every cylinder has a bullet in it.

My success rate with hostas is very high (with GE and FW lost in multiples excluded) only two which were potting errors on my part. I think you can see from my recently posted photos, my hostas are in pretty good shape, if the neatness of my gardens isn't.

I am happy for all of us who have had success with GE and not for my failure. If I didn't really like GE's expectations,I wouldn't have purchased 5 of them.

Les


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

I have to admire the determination of those of you who purchase multiple plants of Gt Expectations, but I don't think I will be that committed to it. If I have no success with the Gt Expectations arriving next week, then my next post on here will probably be "what hosta looks similar to Gr Expectations but is a fast, easy grower?" : )

Kate


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Hey, Home Depot has luck growing them, how come? My local HD sells very nice big, sturdy, healthy, blooming plants at $4.28 per pot, all grown in the US. I hit my hands, thought about HVX, but could not resist the $4.28. They will grow out of the way in my garden doubled up.
Bernd


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

This is my first ever picture posting, so I apologize if I screw it up. This one's about 4 years old, in clay soil, in a bit of a root battle with the Ash it's up against, and sun off and on during all times of day. The rock at the lower right is about 7-8 inches across.
2011 Great Expectations


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Very NICE !!!

:)


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liveoutside, if I hadn't already fallen for Gt Expectations, your pic certainly would have caused me to fall head over heels! Wow, that is the most beautiful picture!

Kate


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Seeing a picture of a blooming GE almost 20 years ago is how I first became attracted to hosta. Although a slow increaser, my @ 16-yr-old GE is now one of the largest by leaf size and certainly the most stunning hosta in my landscape. It has been moved about 4 times till the most suitable location was found, which, in my yard, is an area that receives some afternoon sun. I (reluctantly)divided it for the first time this spring and potted the divisions and it (and divisions) made it through the surgery(whew!) just fine.


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Aw, thank you, Kate. :-) I'm glad you enjoyed the picture and are giving GE a try! She's worth it! I really should get out there this weekend and get some pics of it in full bloom. Kathy


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Very ice Ronnie! I am loving these bigger older plants coming to light !

If I could ask a question .. did it slowly add eyes the whole time? or did it ever have any years where it greatly increased in size?

Great stuff in this thread...


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Leafwatcher, great question.
To those with the big, ole' GEs...
did it ever have a "leap" year?

Michelle


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Great discussion. Here is a picture of GE planted last fall. Will see if it comes back next year and continues to grow. It certainly has grown. I am surprised to see the it is ready to bloom.

Vivian


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Is it crazy to think somewhere along the line a better sturdier plant has EVOLVED from earlier Great Expectations?


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Here are 2 of mine. I bought and planted the 1st one in 1996 and the 2nd in 2000. I have 5 in the ground, 4 are potted, becasue a vole attacted one this past winter!

Great Expectations #1 12

Great Expectations #1 12


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

>>>Is it crazy to think somewhere along the line a better sturdier plant has EVOLVED from earlier Great Expectations?<<<
???I purchased my successful beauty almost 20 years ago....from the garden center of a discount store!

>>>did it slowly add eyes the whole time? or did it ever have any years where it greatly increased in size?<<<
I really don't recall it having a leap year...just has steadily increased year after year.
I increased the size of my bed, added some compost, and moved it foreward several times, probably about every three years. It is located where it has good drainage and, as I mentioned earlier, gets afternoon sun.


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I hope I am not repeating, cuz I didn't have time to read all the others. However, I know how frustrating this temptress can be.
I killed her 3 times before finding the right spot, so you see, I fell in love with her too. She now resides on the East side of the house, between two mature French lilacs with barely enough room for her to squeeze into the space between them.
I think she delights in the early morning sun. I tried her in this spot, because someone else, on the forum, had written that she liked morning sun.
gramma_jan


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I've seen a couple of gorgeous ones but after 10 years and deciding to dig and compost GE it finally started to grow. I'll give it one more year. If it continues to grow i'll be very happy. If not, to the compost pile it will go.


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I've got three... one shrunk due to unknown reasons... the other two are lovely... true eye-catchers, which is saying something when they are in the presense of over 2000 hostas in my yard.

I understand people trying it and deciding it doesn't grow well in their locale or garden - and sympanthize - and recognize my success comes more from luck than from being a great gardener - but it remains one of the most beautiful hosta leaves in the world and is only carp for those who can't grow it... It's in my top ten.


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

MyHostas Database says there is a 'Great American Expectations'..
"Hosta 'Great American Expectations' is a new introduction that may be the answer to those who complained that H. 'Great Expectations' grows too slow. Selected by two of America's top hosta gurus, Van Wade and Ed Elslager, this mutation reportedly grows much faster and larger than its parent H. 'Great Expectations'. Each 4' wide clump is topped in late spring with 2' tall scapes of light lavender flowers."

I know nothing about its availability.
Michelle

Here is a link that might be useful: MyHostas Database: Info about Hosta Great American Expectations


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

I think there was/is some stronger and some weaker clones that otherwise looked identical, coming out of tissue culture. I got my GE years ago.....it was planted by our front walk. It got to big so I Plopped it in the back corner of our yard.....thought it might be doomed but it has thrived there too and it is now big (bigger than most of these photos here). I am in zone 6-ish in central NJ. My soil is shallow and somewhat heavy. We had a couple drought years where I lost a few Hostas but this did fine.


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

I JUST picked one up from a farm in Orchard Park NY (part of Murray Bros Nursery). I hadn't even had it on my mind when we went, but they had one in the gardens that was large and lovely, so I added it to my mental list. It is in my brand new Hosta garden that the several HUGE (nameless) green Hostas that were here when we bought the house created (they were in desperate need of a dividing, but then I ended up with more than I could fit in where they had been, so a new garden bed was called for). Only time will tell if it happy there or not.


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

This whole issue of Great Expectations has come up again in another post, so I'm scooting this up to the first page again--so others can read all these fine and interesting responses.

Kate


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

  • Posted by babka 9b NorCal (My Page) on
    Fri, Jun 8, 12 at 0:39

Everyone should give this one a try at least 3 times under different conditions in their own gardens, just to see. When it grows well (as you can see from above pics)it is simply spectacular. I'm on number 2 for now and plan to persevere.

-Babka


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Great Expectatons 2012
I have not had problems with this cultivar. I am in NJ. Maybe I am lucky and got a more vigorous "form" of this plant. This one is a GIANT>


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That is a beaut !!!!!

thanks for sharing the pic..


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Just wanted to report that GE is back again this year along with all the others. It did seem to start a little later than my NOIDS but is further along than Dream Queen who is in the same bed. We shall see.


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After posting pictures of my 2 new Great Expectations last year, I was told it was far too early to judge either a success. After reading the posts, I took a walk outside and took a couple of pictures.

 photo DSC_0642_zpscad2a7c2.jpg

This GE gets more Sun, but was slowed down by my stepping on it last year crushing about 1/3 of it.

 photo DSC_0641_zps2e0a628d.jpg

This puppy gets maybe 3/4 hour less sun (morning). I suppose it is still too early for me to claim victory over the GE curse, but I like the progress so far.

If you look at it closely it does look like a face.

Jon

This post was edited by jonnyb023 on Fri, May 10, 13 at 11:04


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Mine have been SO SLOW to get up and open, it worries me how long its taking with the cool weather, I just wish they would open up and start catching some sun !

Jon yours look good, and avoid stepping on them ! hahahah I think you must live in the right spot because the plants look healthy to me.


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Seeing it in my garden it is such a pretty hosta I will not be upset if it does not get large.

We buy mini hostas for a specific spot.


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Leafwatcher, there are quite a few that I will not show to avoid incriminating myself...they seem to bounce back from my abuse though.

Jon


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I loved the info in this thread last year. I had posted a pic of my GE and it was doing okay for third year. I bought it in 2010 at a grocery store for $10.99 (Canadian). In 2011 it had 3 eyes, 2012 it had 5 eyes and this year it has 8 eyes. So growing slowly but surely and the colours are wonderful.

Below are photos of it in varying years.

The year I bought it.
 photo a1ec9df6-d9de-4ae5-b9ff-d9391cbb320c.jpg
Unfortunately, the only photo I could find from 2011 is below. That year, I cleared out a lot of room for the hostas but had not done it yet when this pic was taken. GE is barely visible on right side in front of Krossa.
Back Hosta Bed photo BackFenceHosta2011-1-1.jpg
2012 which I posted above last year
GreatExpectations photo GreatExpectations.jpg
and this year. The pic below was taken in late afternoon with the sun on it. I will see if I can get another pic with different lighting to show off the colours better.
Great Expectations photo 031.jpg
and for fun, here is a pic of the bed to compare to those above.
 photo 04c6ec3b-05a9-4a02-833e-98d548315fdc.jpg


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I'm bumping this thread...I am hoping to remind those who posted that we'd love to see updates for 2014... I think I'm going to try one...or three...this year. I do think I have some good spots for them, and since I am in Wisconsin (and travel to MN a lot), I must surely be a good candidate for success!


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

  • Posted by Babka 9b NorCal (My Page) on
    Sun, Apr 6, 14 at 2:15

Three is the charm for me. If it doesn't do well after three tries, I give up. I am on my third GE that I got last year.

If it grows well for me for three years I'm happy.

So I will have an opinion next year.

It is such a beautiful hosta, and worth the effort.

-Babka


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

There's one lady in the upstate New York hosta society that has the largest and most jaw dropping GE that I have ever seen. It gets morning sun and is in a wet area of her garden.

I brought mine from TN to VT ten years ago and it has almost doubled in size. I was going to dig it up last year and toss it but it's putting out a beautiful vibrant blue sport, so it got another reprieve.

As Ken said "it's carp". Unless it has ideal conditions, it's a waste of space, time and money.


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

 photo DSC_0627_zpsaf6df999.jpg

This post was edited by jonnyb023 on Sun, Apr 6, 14 at 9:07


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Here is this GREAT advice on growing GE, from forum member dhaven, which I have saved for future reference.

"dhaven
Some varieties are very picky about growing conditions, and unless they are planted in optimum conditions, they will either remain small, or fade away and die. The best example of this I know of is Great Expectations, which also happens to be my favorite hosta. A great many people have lost this one, sometimes more than once. I have three very large mature plants, and they are the prettiest thing in the garden. It took some experimentation, but there are three things that GE absolutely must have to thrive.
First, and most importantly, plant it shallowly. It's going to be a very large plant, so the natural inclination is to plant it deeply, but this will kill it faster than anything else. Plant it so shallowly you are convinced that it will tip over, and you've got it right. Secondly, it likes a lot of light. Dappled shade is ideal, but it will take several hours of direct sun, either morning or afternoon. Third, it likes a lot of water. If you give a GE all three of these things, you will increase your chances of growing it into an absolutely stunning plant.
If you want to try any of the hostas that have the reputation of being difficult, be prepared to try different locations and growing methods, and possibly go through several plants before you discover what works for that variety in your location. When you do find out what works, please share the information with the rest of us!"


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

isnt johnny's coloration backwards.. GE is white centered .. isnt it??

ken


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Hey, Johnnyb! Don't know where your GE is, but the pic you posted in error is lovely...what's the name of this one? Love the wide margins! When you find your GE don't forget to post. :-)

Jo


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

A great Great Expecations is one of the greatest hostas you will ever see. So if it doesn't grow so great for you, perhaps you should just say, "Great, I'll get another and try again."


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Why do so many try to grow great expectations again and again? Because it is drop dead gorgeous and if you are successful with it you feel so pleased with yourself! And it is GORGEOUS!!! I spent an age going through all the pix posted. Did I mention gorgeous??????? I tried my second (or is it third?) last fall, it is coming up and look goods, but it it really too early to tell. We'll see. And if I loose it I will try again. I am just sayin'!


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Personally I'd give it a try. First one I tried took off. It is planted in a lot of sun and gets watered regularly by the sprinkler system and I'm glad to have it. I'm not saying I would have tried it over and over again, but wouldn't discourage someone new from giving it a try. It's a beautiful Hosta. Mine was about 4' across lost year.

Dan

This post was edited by dansgrdn on Mon, Apr 7, 14 at 0:11


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Beautiful, Dan.

Don B.


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RE: So what's the latest on Great Expectations?

Rosie, couldn't agree with you more! I happen to love how mine looked last year exposed to more sunshine.


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