Thursday, May 15, 2014

May 2014 (Second Edition)

Sometimes even the best gardeners are fooled …
and this time I was had by a weed!
For a few days the Hosta count was reversed to:
0 up with 21 to go …

To be honest I feel something like Charles Shultz’s Charlie Brown during Halloween as he says, “I got a rock.”  Instead I have to say, “I gotta weed!”  However unlike Charlie Brown I really do feel stupid for not seeing the difference between a weed and a Hosta.  It kinda disrupts the meditative, pleasant adventure of knowing that the hosta are coming, but not knowing when they will show.  I have to supposed that other gardeners have the same moments too.

(prior to May 8th) My guess for what might come up first goes back to either Sum and Substance or Xanadu Empress Wu (XEW).  These still make for a good guess’ as both grow to large sizes, and they might need the head start to reach their distinguished sizes.  I did some math a few weeks back and kinda came to conclusion that XEW will need to put on 9 inches in height this year to reach its known height of 54 Inches (4 ft, 6in) in 6 years for its maturity.  Sum and Substance is a 4th year plant in my garden and this year I am hoping that it will push to over 20 inches high.  Last year it was pushing 3 ft in diameter and about 12 to 15 inches in height.  It can grow to 28 inches tall and have a diameter of 9 feet … if enough space is given.  In this garden that won’t happen (refer to: March 2014 Garden Basics: The Diagram)  The plant can however be grown to be a impressive ‘sample’ and I am hoping to reach that stage of growth this year!  One very small accomplishment done for my garden; with 20 more to reach for in future years.

Reflectively thinking.  When I received Little Devil last year I would have sworn that the petiole and leaf were longer than 5 inches … more like 7 inches.  Literature from online suggests this hosta grows to 5 inches tall.  IF this plant returns this year and IF it survives over the years we'll see what I can get this to grow to.

BTW what did Charlie Brown ever do with all his rocks over the years? What little I know about his parents (yes they are noted in other Peanuts animation shorts) is that maybe they taught him about rock gardens!

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The Plant Review
Officially: 11 up with 10 to go

YES - a weed made me look foolish list time - but not this time.  At this point I have 1/2 of my garden pulling through.

5/8/14:  The first hosta to be sited this year was … X-ray, a new survivor for my garden!  X-Ray at this point has the biggest surprise as well with THREE spikes of growth.  As this is a first season survivor I had only expected a single spike of growth this year. 

It was followed by the sighting of:

  • Xanadu Empress Wu, a first year survivor!
  • Dancing Queen
  • Emerald Tiara
  • Golden Tiara
  • Holy Mouse Ears, another first year survivor!
  • June
  • Lemon Lime
  • Sum and Substance (really this time!)
  • 'venusta'
  • Vulcan, another first year survivor!

I am on the verge of saying that Gorgon is up, but I am going to hold off until the next edition to qualify it one way or another.
The following I think with a great degree of  caution will be:
  • Dragon Tails
  • Itsy Bitsy Spider, looks promising at this late moment.
  • T-Rex

At this point I am three plants ahead from last year as Holy, Mouse Ears. XEW, and X-Ray are new seasonal survivors for my garden.  IF Dragon Tails, Gorgon, and  Itsy Bitsy Spider pull through then I have succeeded with six new Hostas from last year!  AND IF they survive with my other regulars coming up then I have had a noticeable improved of success with growing hosta from last year (from 10 survivors to 16).  A definite step in the right direction!  These facts must not diminish the importance of the other 5 hostas that have not come up yet.

Sum and Substance is sending up five (5) wonderful spikes1  Looks like an exciting year for this plant.  Am still hoping for 8 spikes for this one.  The warmth this weekend might bring them still.

Golden Tiara is being productive with four spikes; one more than last year.

Emerald Tiara is still being slow at recovering form being divided two years ago.  With only two spikes.  During dividing it had been replanted with three (3) divisions.  A small set back at this point but it will grow!

Xanadu Empress Wu has survived at this point with two of the spikes of three I was expecting,  The leaves at this point are smaller than any of the last years leaves.  We have a summer to see where this goes; and the third spike may still come.

Dancing Queen has one spike and I am not seeing the other two spikes that ought to be there from last year.  Hoping for some decent leaves on this one to make up for two years of difficult growing conditions.

Minnesota has had a late spring; and the real spring warmth is still to come.  As the late spring moves forward I expect a few more surprises than just X-Ray taking a jump start on growth.

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