Hostas Brighten Shade

Hostas, also known as Plantain Lilies, are part- shade-loving plants that are grown for their beautiful leaves rather than their flowers.  

Fall is the ideal time to divide and plant more in your garden. After digging a clump of roots with a shovel or trowel, soak the root ball long enough to pull apart the multiple plants that have developed and become entwined. There is a video at https://bit.ly/2Po4sYm that illustrates how.

Hosta varieties have leaves from 6-inches to 6-feet across and leaf colors from blue to gold. Mail order plants usually arrive in 4-inch pots and can take a few years to mature to their full size.  Hosta roots do not grow during the winter like other perennials so they should be divided and planted soon.

Gold leaf varieties: Midas Touch and Good as Gold.  Blue leaf Hostas: Blue Heaven, Blue Angel and H. sieboldiana Elegans.  There are also some varieties with purple flowers and cream tipped leaves, 

All Hostas are vulnerable to deer, snail and slug damage. They need regular water to look their best but their roots will deteriorate if they stand in water. An application of mulch will preserve moisture and reduce weeding. Usually Hostas are planted with ferns, Astilbe, Columbine, Oxalis, Coral Bells, etc.

Tulsa Hosta Connection’s annual Hosta sale is Sat, September 15 from 9 am to 2 pm. at the Tulsa Garden Center, 2435 South Peoria. Publicist Carol Puckett said club members divide Hostas and other perennial plants from their gardens and put them into containers for the sale. The price for named Hostas range from $5 to $8 and un-named Hostas can be as low as $2 to $4 each.

Hostas are native to Japan, Korea, China and Russia. They are in the Asparagaceae family, along with other familiar plants such as Agave, Asparagus, Chionodoxa, Hyacinth and Scilla. They were named in 1812 for the physician and botanist, Dr. Nicholas Thomas Host.

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