Wednesday, August 19, 2015

August 2015 Second Edition

One eye on the plants, and one eye on the weather
- that's what gardeners do.

I've been looking at the Month to Month and a half forecasts for St. Paul, Minnesota and it would seem that fall might approach a little sooner than not this year as evening temperatures for August and September have hints of 50ºF/10ºC temperatures in the evenings.  Here in the Minnesota we generally do not see these temperatures until late September and into October.  Last year our frost came in November.  This year I am wondering if it might be where it ought to be - right around Halloween.

In the other direction this month I moved the Hosta Survival Table over to a Dropbox/PDF distribution arrangement.  i hope those of you who have looked at have found it just as informative as the previous blog page posting of it.  I've made some changes and improvements that a standard blog page would not have permitted.  As this format moves forward and as you get the feel of it I hope that you make suggestions and comments to improve it.  … As always your on topic questions and inquiries are ALWAYS welcomed here.

Hosta on the Way
White Feather
  • Attempt #1:
    • 7/16/15: Ordered from Nursery B.
    • 7/27/15: A shipment arrived … but what was delivered WAS NOT White Feather.
      • Seeking refund.  No result yet.
  • Attempt #2:
    • 1/??/16:  Will reorder the plant from Nursery C during early January.
    • 4/??/16:  Will schedule the arrival for late April.

Popcorn and Vulcan
  • 7/14/15: Ordered on.
  • 8/00/15: Being shipped out very late August
  • 9/??/15: Arrival date.

As I planted Snake Eyes with rhizomes straight down; maybe I can experiment a little with these to see if laying the rhizomes in a radial pattern works better.

FLF PD#001
B.E., one of my fans from south central Minnesota, has a hosta that has adapted to prairie grassland.  Before you think 'that's nothing' you may want to consider that prairie grass can choke out trees.  We think at this point is a 'double sport'.  It sported once in the garden that they received it came from, and once again under their care.  We're both going to be watching this plant.  B.E. says the plant is ready to divide and they are hinting they may deliver some to me.  I am trying to encourage them just send leaves for me to explore basic hydroponics with since Originator's Stock is like gold.

Hosta Observations

Empress Wu
  • 7/31/15:  There's another leaf coming up the center.  This makes it 14 leaves, and counting.  With 13 leaves visibly seen this variety is putting on a very good show.  This first season plant is looks impressive and a bit bold - even at only 11 inches high.
  • 8/ 7/15:  The leaves seem to be separating to make way for a scape.  The 14th leaf seems smallish.
  • 8/11/15: Leaf 15 is now seen; 3 more to go to the 18th.

Emerald Tiara
  • 7/30/16: A second round of scape(s) of flowers are coming on this plant.

  • 8/ 7/15:  Looks like it might be pushing out a scape.  Will know after the weekend.
  • 7/12/15:  A scape is indeed it is.  I wait to see just how tall this will get.

Mighty Mouse
  • 8/12/15:  The last leaf is being lost.  By the time this is published I think it won't be.

Snake Eyes
  • 7/30/15:  I think a second leaf is forming with the first leaf.  If it does that's another good sign that I have done things right!  I'll know by next Monday.
  • 8/ 3/15: Second leaf wasn't.  Only thing I see is the one cut leaf sitting there and laughing at me.  I would have thought that second leaf would have come by now.  The plant had when it arrived a robust rhizome system, – but nothing is happening at this time.  I am beginning to wonder if I should have soaked the rhizomes for a half day and then laid them out radially around the main tuft when I planted it.  Ummm.
  • 8/ 5/15: Pulled the Snake Eyes to re-examine it. Rhizome were reduced but the growth spikes are quite definitely still there.  Quickly replanted; moving the plant a smidge higher in the ground. The leaf may not be in the same position, but I've got eyes coming ... I just have to be patient.
  • 8/ 7/15:  We've got 3 spikes above ground.  One looks questionable.  We'll see how many will leaf now.  Others are likely to follow. I forget who made the observation, although I know it was one of the Hosta communities "great gurus": Bob Axmear, Mark Zillis, or George Schmid ... or possibly even someone else who is in that class of standing.  The comment was something like:  "One cannot plant a [healthy] hosta incorrectly, nature will always right it."  This is one of those cases where I wish I had remembered the comment sooner since I would not have worried so much about how this rhizome ball had been planted.  For 18 days of being planted and growing I think Snake Eyes will be ok.  I must learn patience in the garden.
  • 8/ 9/15: Looks like 6 spikes for future eyes are coming up.  Nothing open yet.  There may be +6 more underneath the ground working their way to the surface.  This Hosta will put on a great show before October even with the 6 spikes as online observers elsewhere suggest that this hosta grows 'fast'.
  • 8/11/15:  The leaves of a few of the spikes are just beginning to open.  The eyes come with them!
  • 8/12/15:  Leaves a little more open - but temperatures are hot,
  • 8/13/13:  Two clumps of spikes.  The larger seems to be doing good; leaves ought to unfurl in a day or two.  The second clump seem to be doing ok but I suspect because of the depth of the growth bud they will not survive.  These leaves are trying to open but won't be able to because of their depth.  This would suggest that even though hosta can 'correct themselves' the depth of the growth eyes does make a great difference.
Two Eyes on Snake Eyes ...
  • 8/18/15:  It's been raining!  I suspect by this time that the leaves have opened.  Bringing with them the first eyes of Snake Eyes!  So I am celebrating with a graphic.  Although the plant I believe was named for the eyes of snakes; my garden is on the theme of Chaos and Destruction.  Snake Eyes in my garden represents the addiction of gambling (and addictions in general).  I think all of us can think of at least one person who has had to deal with the destructive implications of an addiction.  Those who 'survive' the addiction many times become stronger than they were before.

Hosta Scapes and Blooms 

Dixie Chickadee
  • 8/ 1/15: When this plant first scaped it sent one scape, and I knew there had to be more than one.  And then the second scape came.  It still puzzled me as I knew I had planted 3 divisions of this plant.  Sure enough the third scape has risen, and on it's way.
  • 8/ 7/15: There are now 5 scapes on this planting.  I had planted 3 plants of two divisions each; So where is the 6th … ?

  • 8/ 4/15: Scapes beginning to fade

Golden Tiara
  • 8/ 4/15: Scape damaged - bloom lost.

  • 8/ 8/15:  In the hosta world when a scape finishes blooming the scape is done with and eventually fades away.  When a hosta blooms a second time it generally sends up new scape AFTER the first scapes are completed.  In these cases it is properly known as a 'RE-bloom'.  I think I have a Global Hosta First in my garden.  I have a scape of Gorgon that has by all right has finished blooming.  To the top of this scape it seems that it is attempting to produce a second bloom cluster - thus I thunk I have a true "Second Bloom".  I'll keep you posted as to what happens.

Little Sunspot
  • 8/ 4/15: Second scape faded.  Didn't notice when that happened.

Rainbow's End
  • 8/ 3/15: Scape standing STRAIGHT up.
  • 8/ 4/15: Bloom set of scape missing.  Pinched or cut off by someone?

The Razor's Edge
  • 8/ 9/15: Flower has opened!  Felt like it took forever to happen.

Hosta on the Way Out 

Mighty Mouse is having a very hard time of it.  People else where online are suggesting to me that maybe I ought to let this plant go.  I may do that as I might have FLF PD#001 coming.
  • 8/ 3/15: The second leaf is being being let go.  Soon to be back to one leaf.
  • 8/15/15: The last leaf seems to be fading.  I think It's time to rethink the mice in my garden.
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This cycle of gardening has had it's ups and downs.  Hosta 'Loyalist' can only be dealt with after the refund is settled.  It's in the spot where White Feather will go.  With Mighty Mouse failing that opens a new space up in my garden.  Do I move Hacksaw over, or do I move the solid form of Holy Mouse Ears over as I have thought about doing that.  Popcorn and Vulcan also arrive in the next few days to fill in those locations that have been empty all summer.  And it is also frustrating to see blooms vanish for seemingly no reason.  And on that note all I can say is to stay tuned to the next edition of Hosta By Kelley for some of those answers, and more excitement!

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