Hosta By Kelley

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Recording growth rates

From first planted division, to clump; to clump to round; to round to fairy ring; to fairy ring back to clump.  The cycle continues on and on ... IF ... you leave a hosta in one place nearly undisturbed.  What is so important about studying the speed at which a hosta grows?  Some might say this is trivial.

As hosta can also be used as a vegetable, and in  theory they could be harvested up to 3 times during a season. There's a number of things we might be able to learn about these plants if we only left them to grow on their own.

  1. Do hosta all grow in the same way.  It has been suggest that ANY mature division of hosta will have no more than 18 leaves.
  2. Do only mature hosta grow scapes?  What is the proportion of scapes to spikes in a clump or round of hosta?
  3. What is the leaf count to spike count average across  seasons?  Is this progression the same for full growth cycle to full growth cycle, or do hosta also have an aging and death cycle as well?  It's been suggested that an untouched hosta plant can survive for 130 years.  Is this accurate?  Can any hosta survive this long?
  4. Is the three cut backs and that's it for Hosta real or a myth?  Do some hosta have other rules?
  5. Can an agricultural cycle be determined for hosta as a future food source?

NAHA is envisioned to a long term research station for hosta.

Plant Name Menu Codes:

In Gardner's collection:  green.

In Collection but is an unregistered sport: BLUE.

Past Plants that are no longer in the collection: Brown.

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