Flowers & Garden


The Hosta – A Shade Loving Perennial

The Hosta – A Shade Loving Perennial written by Bonnie Carrier

preplanned shade garden with hostas
Another way to use Hostas is by mixing them with other shade plants, which can include Perennials such as Astilbe, Bleeding Heart and Japanese Painted Ferns also, Shrubs like Azalea, Hydrangea or Sweet Pepperbush. You’re not limited to using shade plants just within wooded areas or around trees. For instance, a partly shaded walk way along side your home would make a perfect candidate for this combination, plant the shrubs or tall perennials along the back next to the house with the Hostas placed in front can look quite stunning.

A large shade tree in our front yard looked like a good candidate for dressing up and because of the success of the birdbath Hostas of course I decided to try more around the tree. Using a tiller we formed a circle around the base and mixed good topsoil into the existing dirt, edged the circle with bricks, all that was need now were the plants.

I spent several days’ scouring local nurseries looking for Hostas in different colors and leaf textures. Armed with six new plants of moderate size – I’m one of those impatient gardeners – I staggered them around the tree, put down a thick layer of cedar mulch then for decorative accent added several groups of unusual looking rocks found in the woods, a family of resin squirrels also found a home sitting around the plants.

It really looked great and I just knew by the following year with regular watering and feeding those six plants would be larger, fuller and gorgeous.

Several days later while doing my daily walk around to look for anything new, I noticed something strange around the tree in the front yard. Getting closer things really looked funny.

It took a moment to realize there were no longer leafy plants growing there, just a bunch of green stems. This was how I learned that Hostas happen to be a favorite before dinner snack for deer.

Therefore my advice is if you live in an area populated with those brown eyed beauties and your going to give Hosta growing a go make sure to spray them with a safe repellant periodically from their emergence in the spring until the first frost in the fall.

So for those shady areas think about planting Hostas, after all they are a whole lot more than scraggly looking lettuce.

Copyright © 2005 bonnie carrier +