One of the best, most versatile, and truly spectacular perennials for the shade or part shade garden is the Hosta or Plantain Lily. There are literally hundreds of varieties available to choose from – almost too many!! There is a Hosta for virtually every niche in your landscape. The diversity is endless! The Viette Farm has over 200 varieties on display in their gardens.
Hosta are normally grown for their foliage effect in the garden and because of their extraordinarily beautiful foliage, they have an extremely long season of interest. Most hosta quickly grow to their mature size in just one or two seasons. In fact, one of the nicest features of hosta is that they only get better and more spectacular with age!
Hosta can be used in mass plantings as a groundcover, as an edging plant, in the rock garden, or the larger and more unusual varieties can be used as spectacular specimen plants.
The diversity of the hosta foliage is one of its most valuable attributes. Leaves can be all shades of green, blue-green, powder blue, and many are variegated with gold or white. The newer cultivars such as 'June', 'Paul's Glory', montana 'On Stage', 'September Sun', 'Fire and Ice', and 'Wolverine' have increasingly unique variegation. Variegated hosta and gold-leaved hosta like 'August Moon' and 'Sum & Substance' can literally light up a dark corner of your shade garden!
Diversity in leaf texture also makes Hosta really unique. Leaves can range from silky smooth as in 'Royal Standard' and the plantaginea cultivars to heavily corrugated as in 'Love Pat' or the sieboldiana cultivars.
Hosta are tough, reliable, and easy to grow. They are almost "fool proof" having few disease or pest problems. Slugs can be a problem, chewing holes in the beautiful leaves. Diatomaceous earth, silica gel, or a product called Sluggo may be sprinkled around the plants to ward off these pests. Many of the newer hosta cultivars have been hybridized to be slug resistant. Cultivars such as 'Bright Lights', 'Krossa Regal', 'Love Pat', the tokudama hybrids, and any varieties that have foliage with heavier substance tend to be more slug resistant.
Unfortunately voles and deer are also "Hosta lovers"! Voles can be discouraged by lining the planting hole and mulching around the stem with Espoma Soil Perfector. Spray your hosta with Bobbex or Hot Pepper Wax to deter deer from their munching.
Whether you're a collector of fine Hosta or just love the spectacular show of beautiful foliage, we have the cultivar for you. We have recently dug over 60 varieties from Andre's personal collection to be potted up for sale this summer in our garden center. Many of these varieties are not available anywhere else in the country – after all Andre is one of the original charter members of the American Hosta Society and he has some NICE ones!!