GARDENS BY THE BAY
Until recently, we weren't able to grow hostas very successfully. Nature and circumstances seemed to be working against us.
Our earliest gardens had sandy soil, were raised above ground level and prone to drying out quickly. Their sunny exposure was not ideal for growing hostas either. Our only shaded areas were under the ever-present cedar trees, whose canopy prevented all but the heaviest rains from reaching the ground beneath and whose roots sucked up most of the available moisture in the ground. To make matters worse, we weren't always there to provide extra water when necessary. When we finally began to spend several months at a time at our cottage, we started having summers which were, one after another, prone to drought.
We eventually created the EAST GARDEN which was shaded until early afternoon. Then came the NORTH GARDEN with its tall grasses and shrubs and the potential for protection and shade they provided. Some hostas were moved into both gardens from areas under construction.
In 2003 the Hosta Garden itself evolved to the northwest of a large pine tree which was creating more and more shade as the years passed. Hostas had been planted in this general area earlier, in their own holes in the rocky terrain but eventually a normal bed was made where they could spread to their hearts' content. A shade-loving Hakone Grass, Hakonechloa macra aureola, and a Japanese Painted Fern, Athyrium nipponicum 'Pictum', joined them.
Over the years we have added several more Hosta whose species and cultivar names we know. Searching the Internet has been helpful in narrowing down the identification of some still unnamed forms. One of the best sites we've found for researching hundreds of different hosta forms, complete with information and images is the Hosta Library whose link is below our own hosta images.
For a number of useful Hosta links, be sure to check out the information at the bottom of this page.
Or check out the images and descriptions of the Hostas currently in our collection below.
Hosta fortunei 'Aureo-Marginata': 18-27"x24"
Hosta lancifolia: Narrow-Leaved Plantain Lily, 18"x30"
specific epithet is pronounced: for-TOON-ee-eye
synonym: Hosta fortunei 'Yellow Edge'
foliage: large, elongated, deeply furrowed, glaucous-green, heart-shaped leaves with irregular creamy-yellow edge
flowers: in mid-summer, trumpet-shaped, violet, sometimes called pale lavender or mauve
Hosta plantaginea: Fragrant Plantain Lily, August Lily, 24"x48"
specific epithet is pronounced: lann-sih-FOE-lee-uh
foliage: narrow, lance-shaped, glossy and green
flowers: late summer into autumn, deep violet or lavender-blue on 24" stems
note: this is always the last one to bloom in our gardens
note: watch for a photo here soon
specific epithet is pronounced: plan-tuh-JINN-ee-uh
foliage: pale green, oval, glossy
flowers: late summer into early autumn, highly fragrant, trumpet-shaped and white
note: this one prefers sunnier locations than most
Hosta sieboldiana 'Elegans': Siebold's Hosta 'Elegans', 3'x5'
Hosta sieboldiana 'Frances Williams': Siebold's Hosta 'Frances Williams', 25"x30"
specific epithet is pronounced: see-bowl-dee-AY-nuh
species named for: German physician & botanist Philipp Franz von Siebold (1796 - 1866)
foliage: very large, heart-shaped, heavily-textured with prominent veins, has a blue cast, turning lovely golden in autumn
flowers: June to July, trumpet-shaped, on long stems, in racemes high above foliage
Hosta undulata: Wavy-Leaved Hosta, an unnamed form, forms a short, small clump
note: this form, in full bloom, is seen in the image border around this page, as well as out of bloom in the photo above
named after: Mrs. Frances Ropes Williams (1883-1969) of Winchester, Massachusetts
foliage: very large, rounded, puckered, heavy-textured, blue-green with a wide yellow margin that deepens with the season
flowers: in July, near white, actually a soft lilac
note: may scorch in full sun
Hosta undulata: a much taller form at 2-3' than the one above
specific epithet is pronounced: un-dew-LAY-tuh
foliage: creamy-white centre with green edges, twisted-looking
Hosta undulata 'Albo-Marginata': 16"x36"
foliage: striking, leaves 6" long, 3" wide, wavy edged with whitish stripes
flowers: pale lilac on tall stems
uses: to bring brightness into a shady border
Hosta 'Carnival': 36"x16"
foliage: emerges variegated in spring, with a narrow cream edge and a green mid-rib, foliage looks twisted
note: the second crop of leaves is often streaked, very different from the first
Hosta 'Gold Standard'
foliage: heavily textured, glossy, dark green with wide yellow margin, with some mottling of yellow & green
flowers: long lasting, lavender
Hosta 'Golden Tiara': 12" tall
foliage: oval to heart-shaped, all green in spring, changing to bright yellow with green margin, centres near white by fall
flowers: lavender, trumpet-shaped
Hosta 'Guacomole': 24"x36"
foliage: small, round to heart-shaped, green with irregular golden margins
flowers: in July
Hosta 'Halcyon': to6"x16"
winner: American Hosta Growers' Association Hosta of the Year - 2002
foliage: large, rounded, heart-shaped, shiny golden centre & green margins
flowers: June to August, lavender, large & fragrant
note: needs some sun to intensify leaf colour
Hosta 'June': 12"x30"
foliage: heart-shaped, with parallel veins & wavy margins, arching, grayish-blue that fades out in full sun
flowers: July-August, violet-mauve, trumpet-shaped, in heavy clusters, opening just above foliage
Hosta 'Twist of Lime': 4" tall with vigorous growth rate
winner: American Hosta Growers' Association Hosta of the Year - 2001
foliage: heart-shaped, rich gold with narrow blue edge, light center bleaches to creamy-white in bright light
flowers: in August, lavender on 20" scapes
foliage: narrow and twisting, chartreuse-to-lemon with dark green irregular margins
flowers: small, funnel-shaped
foliage: huge deep glossy green leaves with a satiny finish
Hosta: an unnamed form obtained unlabelled from a plant sale
foliage: huge green non-glossy leaves
Hosta: an unnamed form from a friend in 2008
foliage: tiny and with a hint of blueness
flowers: pale lavender
Now that we have suitable places in which to locate them, I plan to add more to our gardens every year.
Are we finished adding new garden beds? Probably not. But for now, all that's left of our digital garden tour is to view how the beds look in their winter guise. Just follow the link to OUR GARDENS IN WINTER to see for yourself.
Or you may wish to try some of our Plant Partnership pages to get you thinking about creating new plant combinations for yourself. For myriad ideas, just follow the link to PURPLE PERENNIALS & THEIR COMPANIONS or try any of our many other links further below.
foliage: small green leaves with narrow white margins
flowers: will note colour in 2009
The montage below is of images of our Hosta Garden, with hostas both in and out of bloom, during the 2006 gardening season.
POPULAR HOSTA LINKS
Do you have shade gardens with different Hosta forms? Are you looking for good companions to plant with them? Take a look at our own HOSTAS & THEIR COMPANIONS page for lots of ideas.
To find out which other Hosta forms have won their awards, follow the link to the AMERICAN HOSTA GROWERS ASSOCIATION site.
Or visit the HOSTA LIBRARY site for lots of valuable information about every Hosta imaginable. This link will take you to their site and away from ours, so be sure to bookmark us so you can find your way back. Or simply use your Back button to return to our Hosta Garden page after you have checked out the hundreds of Hosta forms they have arranged alphabetically on their site.
Do you have any hostas that you haven't been able to identify? You may find assistance in finding Hosta species or cultivar names by following the link to the MICKFIELD HOSTAS site. There you will find images of the leaf of each type, its size and shape, along with a description of the overall plant from Hosta 'A Many-Splendored Thing' to Hosta 'Zounds'. Follow their own links for a full alphabetical Collections List, Plant List and Catalogue for the current year. A truly amazing site packed with useful information.
All of our own Gardens By The Bay pages can be accessed by clicking on the links below.
GARDEN POETRY |
GARDEN POETRY MUSE
GEORGIAN BAY VIEW
BOTANICAL LATIN - BASICS
CORNER GARDEN CONSTRUCTION  |
CORNER GARDEN PLANTING |
EAST GARDEN |
HOSTA GARDEN |
NORTH GARDEN |
BLUE PERENNIALS Aconitum -
Iris - Vinca
BULBS Allium - Hyacinthus |
Narcissus only |
Tulipa only |
BUTTERFLY MAGNETS Anaphalis - Hemerocallis |
Liatris - Veronicastrum
DAYLILIES Spider & Unusual Form
EDGERS Arabis - Iris |
Nepeta - Veronica
Alchemilla - Tanacetum
HOSTA Hosta - all
HUMMINGBIRD-FRIENDLY PERENNIALS Alcea - Salvia
ORANGE PERENNIALS Achillea - Tulipa
ORNAMENTAL GRASSES Acorus - Imperata |
Miscanthus - Spodiopogon
PINK PERENNIALS Achillea - Lilium |
Lychnis - Veronica
PURPLE PERENNIALS Aconitum - Liatris |
Polemonium - Veronica
RED PERENNIALS Achillea - Veronica
SHADE PERENNIALS Aegopodium - Erythronium |
Ferns - Polemonium |
Polygonatum - Vinca
SILVER FOLIAGE PERENNIALS
Achillea - Cerastium
Cornus - Limonium
Lunaria - Veronica
SIMPLY SPECIAL PERENNIALS Acanthus - Saxifraga
WHITE PERENNIALS Achillea - Iris |
Kalimeris - Yucca
YELLOW PERENNIALS Achillea - Hypericum |
Inula - Verbascum
VARIEGATED-FOLIAGE PERENNIALS Acorus - Erythronium |
Hakonechloa - Lysimachia |
Miscanthus - Yucca
Dianthus 'Tiny Rubies' |
Geum coccineum |
Kerria japonica |
Paeonia tenuifolia |
Papaver somniferum |
Salvia 'East Friesland'
Veronica 'Sunny Border Blue'
DIVISION - SPRING ONLY |
DIVISION - FALL ONLY |
DIVISION - SPRING OR FALL |
DO NOT DIVIDE
ORNAMENTAL GRASSES |
LOCAL GARDENS |
GARDENING BOOKS |