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My first Hosta Bed

Posted by TNJDM Middle Tennessee (My Page) on
Wed, Jul 23, 14 at 8:11

I thought it would be cool to document the building of my first Hosta bed amongst so many experts. By looking at all the beautiful picks and discussions on the board, I am really getting bitten. I spent the last couple of years concentrating on my Bermuda lawn and now that it's really nice, so I need to hit an area that is mostly shaded.
-Approximately 350 sq. ft.
-Gets sun for 2 1/2 to 3 hours (from 4/4:30 to 7pm)
-Ground is relatively soft I feed my lawn predominately with Organics
-Doing the first till this week to add amendments
-Planned on starting with 23 Hosta that I can get in 1 Gallon Containers (I live about 30 miles from a town that bills itself as the "Nursery Capital of the World")

Threw a pick of the area. I have a layout, but couldn't figure how to add multiple pics. I look forward to any tips or tricks as I go along.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: My first Hosta Bed

add more pics.. by replying to your own post...

i just dont know if i would till it ...

what are the trees surrounding???

tilling will cut every single tree root there.. causing the roots to make more roots... etc .. a vicious .. never ending cycle ...

i regret tilling 14 years ago ... and i had what was supposed to be .. favorable trees ...

and NEVER amend a planting hole.. else.. guess where the trees will grow new roots??? i would suggest just adding a good layer of compost across the whole bed.. and let the worms do the job ...

lets see what others suggest ...

TN may be the nursery capitol of the world.. but it isnt the hosta capital of the world ... so i might suggest... you leave plenty of space.. for mail ordering.. some of the more unique plants.. you see here in GW ... are you enabled yet.. lol ..

i wish you luck ...

ken


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RE: My first Hosta Bed

Thanks Ken. The area is actually shaded by three huge trees. Not sure what they are as they were here when I built the house. This pick shows 1 of them. One is to the left of the plot (really huge), 1 is to the right of the driveway. I found 2 Hosta growers in that town that coins itself the Nursery Capital of the World and they seem to have a a pretty nice Hosta Selection (links attached)
http://www.sunshinehollow.com/gardens/generated/hosta_list_alpha_bareroot_text.html
http://www.marysgh.com/
Hosta's start on page 29 of the second link under retail.

Of those 23 Hosta, I'm starting with 1 Krossa Regal, and 2 each of Sum&Substance, Sun Power, Gold Standard, Pauls Glory, Liberty, Halcyon, Orange Marmalade,Guacamole, Stained Glass, Patriot, June. Some back-ups, Sagae, Blue Angel, Francis Williams, August Moon, Fortunei A, Fried Genn Tomato, Fried Bananas, Earth Angel, Golden Tiara, Great Expectations.

I'll add the layouts in a reply.


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Layout 1.


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Layout 2. Obviously the pics I pasted are bigger than 1 gallon, but now the wife agrees to me dropping $500 for this effort :)


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RE: My first Hosta Bed

I've got some nice hostas from Mary's Greenhouse. You may want to post a close up pic of a leaf from that tree. I'm sure someone can ID it for you.


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I'd think twice about Great Expectations and Frances Williams. As we've discussed many times, they do best in zone 5. GE may not survive elsewhere. FW burns easily. The others you mention are workhorses and should do well for you.

In zone 6, you may be cool enough to make them work, though. I hope so. They are both beautiful hosta.

bk


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Thanks bkay (and TNChristine).

There coming off my back-up list, great Info for a newbie.


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In my Zone 6, Great Expectations is growing fine. It is about 3 years old now. It is a slower grower--but healthy.

I think you 'll find a lot of different opinions on GT.

Kate


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I have to laugh at the burnt edge comments when I see it regarding Frances Williams. I have several FW, all in very shaded spots and one in a fair bit of sun.
One in the shade is looking okay-ish. Two in the shade are burnt at the edges. And the one in the sun is big and perfect. Go figure!
As for great expectations, I had one in the ground in a shaded spot and it was so pathetic I almost weeded it by accident one day. So I dug it out of the ground and put in a pot, like it was going to ICU. Now it's doing well in the pot in quite a bit of sun.
Looking back, I would have made choices other than FW and GE, but to me now, as long as they're still alive, I'll just view it as a challenge to see if I can get them big and healthy.


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My GE is also doing well ~ finally. Got it as a plug about 4 years ago and growth was glacial until earlier this year, when I dug it up, cleaned out all the tree roots and replanted it in the same hole along with a larger, box store GE. My little one just took off in a fantastic growth spurt after that and now looks happy for the first time.


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Personally when designing the bed as a whole i would try to avoid any straight lines. Mother nature does not grow in straight lines. So, curved lines on the edges of the beds are always more pleasing to the eye.

Sherry


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People forget that Lakeside hostas originally came from Ooltewah Tennessee,and Mary Chastain grew some pretty good ones! Just my opinion. Phil


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Phil,

So I assume the "Mary's" I'm going to visit is the one your noting?

Anyway, off and running. I know someone mentioned probably not tilling, but I already had it rented, never used one, and just couldn't resist hurting myself.


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And away it gooeeeesss!!!! Damned beautiful property you have there. Have fun, please show us pics when you get it done...

Cheers,
Don B.


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WOW!! That's an estate . Building my new Hosta bed now too, but nowhere near what you are doing. That's going to be gorgeous when finished. Can't wait to see pics when it's done.


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Thanks for the nice comments Don and Jane.

Prep is done and heading off to get the Hosta next Friday.

Appreciate all's input to this point. I'll throw something up next week. Real excited after continuing to read the board and see such beautiful specimen that this forum throws up there. That's only second to your passions!


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And let the games begin! I have only one first bed but at least a dozen LAST beds but so much fun!
Beautiful grounds you have! Keep the pictures coming too


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Hi there TNJD!
Oh boy, I cannot wait until you discover the pictures of the Hosta Liberty mass planted across the front of a home and everyone went gaga over it. Lovely plants too. I can tell from the care with which you keep your front shrubbery that you will obsess over hosta as well. And you look young enough to grow them to maturity, and wind up creating some of your own varieties. Hostas kind of grab you and don't let go, if you have read long on this forum.

Have fun, hostas respond nicely to the kind of attention you like to give.

PS. May I suggest you add a Liberty to your backups? Might as well do it now, I see many Liberty hosta in your future!


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Ah Moccasin, I do have that liberty in the initial list, but not sure about that statement that I'll be around for a while is valid. I think the flying dirt during that tilling masked my extremely gray hair :). I am feeling that obsession creeping on fast. Today while finishing up the bed I looked at my better half and said, "I wonder if we should add few more to our initial list..........

Since you are even much further south than me, I have read many of your posts while preparing for this venture.


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If Mary's Greenhouse is Mary Chastain, start scarfing up hosta. She ought to have some beauties.

She retired a few years ago and "sold" her business. Rumor has it she never received any payment for the sale of Lakeside Hostas. If it's one and the same, you may be able to buy some original stock that doesn't come from tissue culture.

bk


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RE: My first Hosta Bed

  • Posted by Babka 9b NorCal (My Page) on
    Sat, Aug 2, 14 at 20:40

Mary's Greenhouse is a different "Mary". I looked at the website. They sell a LOT of different kinds of plants there. Just a word of caution, be sure to have a chat with them regarding their practices to prevent selling hostas with HVX. Welcome to the forum! Soon you will be tearing up even more of that lawn! Hooray for hostas.

-Babka


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I wish the Garden Web had a button for LIKE!!! This is going to be beautiful!!


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Well, didn't think I would have that much fun shopping as I hate to do it! Ready to put in the ground tomorrow, layout the micro-sprinkler system, and pine bark nugget it up.

Went with the intention of picking up 23 and ended up getting 29. 1 Krossa Regal and 2 each Gold Standard, Sun Power, Sum& Substance, Paul's Glory, Liberty, Halcyon, Orange Marmalade, Guacamole, Stained Glass (looks good size in the pick), Patriot, June, Blue Angel, Loyalist, 2 Island Breeze.


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Don't tell me - Krossa Regal is the one in the center with the huge scape. My collection is small but I have everything you have pictures except Loyalist and Isand Breeze. They are all beautiful and for me easy to grow, I also have the 'cuts', GE which I'm still not sure about and Francis Williams which is probably the biggest and most beautiful in my garden (little dessication burn but not enough to mar the beauty of the plant).

Enjoy your planting. I'm sure it will be spectacular next year.
Barb


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That is the KR. Funny Barb, Island Stream and Loyalist weren't on my original list but Island Stream caught my, and the bosses, eye and loyalist as I liked the opposite look from the patriot. I believe it looks like Fire and Ice, but may get a little bigger. Didn't read a lot of glowing reviews on it here, but figure I'm going to lose some anyway and will have to try others (or add of course :))

GE and FW were on my back-up list, but one I can't get out of my mind from this morning is Summer Breeze. After looking at further pictures, I'll be thinking about that one for a while.

John


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Oh John, you are in for a glorious ride. Your new hostas look great, and growing them is going to give you a lot of pleasure. I have almost all of your choices and I love them every one. And Summer Breeze is another favourite. - you won't regret adding it to your collection. You have all of the infrastructure to become a true addict lol! Hope we will hear from you often on the forum!
Jan


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Off to a great start, John. : )

Don B.


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Thanks Jan and Don. I think that addiction is started. Happened with my front lawn a couple of years ago and I seemed to have replaced my golf and beer addiction with that (well the golf anyway). Now, I plan on being on this site a lot continuing to learn from all you experts.

Besides that, I couldn't leave as I would miss some of Ken's Tourettes postings (lol).


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Beer goes well with hostas.


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That's a terrific looking bunch of hostas!

I have to confess that I lost Loyalist but my Orange Marmelade is rebounding with more sun.

You won't regret getting Summer Breeze, if you do...does well even under my red maple.

Happy hosta planting, TNJDM!


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Sorry for the redundant message.

This post was edited by irawon on Sat, Aug 9, 14 at 19:57


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" Ken's Tourettes postings..."

That's pretty damn funny!!! You made me spit my drink on my keyboard! LMAO!!!

Don B.


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Well got the plants in the ground yesterday, put the micro-sprinkler in and mulch today. That was one hell of a 3 weeks!


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John, that looks so great!! Nice spacing, you lucky man!
I have all except for maybe 3 of them. Great choices and you will LOVE Summer Breeze...also new for me this year and a real pleasing eye catcher! So...I agree with Irawon...go on and get it.....make it an even 30! Lol

That bed will be amazing in the spring with all the various coloured pips poking up.....then all the new growth. Excited for you! Now sit back and enjoy...

Jo


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What a beautiful view you have from that hosta bed. Is all that in the pic your property or a park? The view from my front yard takes in my neighbours RV which sits in their driveway all summer. How I would prefer your view!


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Thanks Jo and Barb. I think I have a good space for the Summer Breeze, along with a few giants. A pick from the road. Looks like I'll be busy next spring :)


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And from the porch.


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Again, beautiful grounds! I have come to realize that the term "less is more" has no relevance and should never apply to hostas, lol!


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Beautiful piece of property. Wish I had that much space.


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I am so excited for you. Your property is lovely and your new hosta bed will be a beautiful addition. I have wandered over here from rose forum and am falling in love with the hosta pictures. I also have shade and am considering starting a hosta bed. Everyone is so nice on this site. Lots of info and encouragement. Have fun with your new babies! Lesley


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John, wow what a spectacular property you have! You will be able to plant hostas for years to come.

Leslie, I have noticed the same thing. This is a wonderful forum - everyone is so positive and supportive of each other - with a good sense of humour thrown in!


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Absolutely gorgeous site and sooo much room to expand. I think you are going to find it irresistible to expand back around towards the street, nice free form islands around those other trees...WOW...are you in trouble.

Jon


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Thanks for the nice input. Excites me to now be a part of this forum.

Of course, being a newbie, already have a question. Can I assume I'll need to water my new babies pretty much everyday for a couple weeks until they "root".

Thanks

John


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As potted hosta, they are used to everyday watering. Their roots have not expanded into the soil yet. So, yes, I would water everyday, especially while it's hot.

Great job!

bk


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Thanks bkay.


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