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Hostas in a garden design

February 3, 2007

Hi, I'm George and I'm not a hostaholic, YET!

At least not to the point to know/remember names of all 70-80-something hostas growing in my garden which I'm not 'collecting', but rather use as a natural choice for 'fillers' or for 'edgings' in my mostly shade-to-part/shade garden.

I know that a lot of you, hostas aficionados, have a great pictures of your gardens where hostas playing major role in overall design and some even have a mass plantings of hostas.

However I'm having trouble to visualize mass planting of hostas as a 'design'.

I'm personaly less interested to create anything like this:


though I undestand that such thing has its own utilitarian merits.

Would you be willing to share your best shots of major/mass planting of hostas?



Here is a link that might be useful:

Comments (35)

  • hostared

    Welcome George,
    You can come out of the closet.
    You are up to 70 or 80. You can do this and admit it.

    Its OK with us to say "I am a hostaholic".

    We are enablers, as you noticed.
    It only gets better with each one you plant.

  • silvergold

    Hi George!! 70-80 hostas ! Wow! Plus just how many hydrangeas?

    I'm not one much for hostas as you have them in the picture either. Seems uninspiring. But I have seen many very nice pictures on this page where they play a major design role with support from other shrubs or perennials.

  • esther_opal

    Try some Japanese landscaping books. One Japanese theory is that plants take the place of rocks or you create a landscape of rocks. Many Jap landscapes are pleasing arangements of rocks and plants.

    Example; if you want height use a rock instead of a plant.

  • ego45

    Hi, SG!

    At last count there were about 60 hydrangeas of all kinds and I'm willing to admit I'm a hydrangeaholic. :-))

    What I'm looking here, is an inspiration for a mass planting. I guess, stage of 'hostas as a supplementary plans' I passed already.

    I remember seeing Ken's and another genleman (from Canada?) pictures of mature hostas in natural settings with rocks, logs etc and kicking myself for not saving them.


  • papou

    Hi George,
    Here's a few pics of some of my gardens:

    The above 2006 pics are from 2 of my 25 garden beds.
    To see the rest of my gardens you may click on the link below.


    Here is a link that might be useful: Papou's Hosta Gardens

  • Teresa_MN

    Welcome! I give you one more season and 3 catalogs and you'll number in the hundreds! lol


  • ego45

    Hostared, SG, Teresa_mn,
    -Just for the record, 70-80 of hostas total, not a 70-80 cultivars. :-))

    -You killed me!!!
    This is unfair to open your Pandora's box in front of a man already suffering from CHAD (Compulsive Horticultural Acquisition Disorder).
    I'm speechless...
    Going back to your site, I'm only up to Garden #6 :-))

  • yardmom

    Neat to see how your garden has grown, Papou!

    Ego45, post more please! I love hydrangeas! I have about 8 different kinds right now. I'd love to add more, but i am afraid the deer might discover them (they have mostly left my hostas alone!)

  • papou

    Thanks Dorothy. I'm satisfied the way my hostas have grown. I'm at the stage now that I have to move some hostas during Spring. Some are too close to others...after 3 years at the same place, I can now move my 'blues' from sun to a shady location to retain their blue color. I look at my hostas as a puzzle..and it's a new challenge for me.
    On my website, I have double the number of pages. There were too many pics (sometimes 60)on the same page. This was taking too much time for the pics to appear especially if someone has Diaiup. I would appreciate a feedback from you guys whether you can navigate through my website without any problem.

  • sassy7142

    Papou, Oh my gosh! Your gardens are just beautiful.

    And your website is fantastic.

    I had no problem checking everything out on your website.

    I can't imagine how you found the time to make such a informative website with all the outside work that you must have.

    You actually count the eyes on your plants? Are you the guy that keeps track of how many slugs you find each year?

    Ohhh, to be retired. lol

    Thanks for sharing the link to your website with us.

  • papou

    Yes Sassy I'm that crazy guy that counts the slugs.... And yes I count the eyes and measure all my hostas once a year. I'll do that until the hosta has matured...then I'll quit.
    But you know what? As the years go by, I find this urge to collect hostas more and more interesting...intriguing..and informative. It's the best hobby that I ever had...it keeps me young at heart...give me great satisfaction and happy moments.
    Needless to say that I cant wait till next Spring...:)
    I like to share with others as others have shared their experience with me in the past. Aint life great!!


  • goldiemom

    Oh my, what gorgeous hostas! I hope my few that I've ordered will look that good, maybe not the first year or so, but ... some day!!

  • goldiemom

    p.s. Papou, may I ask where you get your hostas? I just looked at your website...all I can say is WOW!!!

  • ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

    you buy a few.. then addiction sets in .. then you mass them ... a blue next to a yellow.. to a green with edge.. then blah, blah, blah ...

    go figure .. then are planted in columns and rows .... you can barely tell IMHO .... ken


  • papou

    Goldiemom, Thank you for visiting my website. I have bought the majority of my hostas bareroots (online) from Canadian Suppliers like Hosta Choice (best)...Rideau Woodland Ramble...Gardens Plus...Budd Gardens...etc. I believe that these Canadian Suppliers buy from the USA...Q&Z (Zilis), Green Hill...the Solbergs...especially the new hostas that are coming out. It's difficult and costly for us Canadians to buy from the States because of very tough Canadian laws re. border crossing.
    I have to say however that last year I bought hostas from two suppliers in North Carolina...Hickory Farm and Green Hill...and was more than satisfied because of the very large roots system of the hostas I purchased. It made up for the excess money...
    I am always astonished and happily surprised to see how an hosta improves as it matures. It's part of the fun...


  • moongirl54

    I'm normally a rather shy lurker, but Papou, I just have to comment on you wonderful website and gardens. I drooled all over my keyboard and made a new must-have list!
    And Ken, what is that cute little blue one in the front of your picture? I really like that one.


  • tibs

    And you recycle tires! Way to go Papou.

  • papou

    George, Please excuse me for not adressing you sooner. Sorry about your CHAD sickness...LOL....Feel free to copy whatever pics can help you in your design.
    Thanks Kathy, you're very kind...and tibs...I just may use these tires next year to plant my minis...you just gave me this idea....
    I replied to those of you that contacted me by emails. My website was created 2 years ago with the help of Joyce (from Minnesota).
    Feel free to visit my gardens and my individual hostas in my collection by clicking on the link below.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Papou's Hosta Gardens

  • gardenfanatic2003

    Papou - would you marry me!?! LOL - just kidding - wouldn't want your wife to come after me!

    I put your website in my "Favorites" so I can browse through all your gardens at leisure. Awesome!

    And what a good way to track my hostas' progress - counting the eyes every spring. Thanks for the idea - I'm going to start doing that. I just get sicker every year. My children already think I'm a little over the top when it comes to plants.


  • sassy7142

    Papou, I just have to say that I find the pics of your hostas on your website are much better than on the Hosta Library site.

    Yours are so clear and labeled so nicely.

    And the very best part is... I can see what a certain plant looks like next to another one! It takes the guess work out since I'm not too visual.

    Like Deanna, I put your website in my "Favorites" too.

    Just curious, out of all of your hosta, which is your very favorite?

  • papou

    Deanna and Sassy: you honor me. Thanks!
    Sassy, I have 5 which are my ultimate favorites: Sun Power, Sum and Substance, On Stage, Paul's Glory, and Paradigm.

    sun Power has a special sentimental value for me, because it's one of the 4 first hostas that DW Therese brought home in 1998. It grows in full sun and has reached maturity:

    Sum and Substance now has huge leaves and reached 35"high X 80" diameter last year. It also is happy growing in full sun:

    On Stage has been an excellent grower for me...getting better and nicer year after year:

    Paul's Glory and Paradigm are fun to watch because they change color as the season progresses:


    Oh!...I forgot Touch of Class...Niagara Falls...Alex Summers...Summer Breeze...LOL...


  • maidofshade

    Greenguy I love your planting combination! Looks Great.
    Papou Can't wait till you update your sight this year. I am curious to see how your Waterfall of hosta is coming along. And Ken love the blues in your post. It is fun to see how everyone combines diffent hostas in their plantings.

  • hostaholic2 z 4, MN

    I had such fun visiting your website Papou. I too have bookmarked it. After looking at the thermometer and seeing -16 degrees F. this morn, visiting your website was like taking a mini vacation. Thanks so much.

  • papou

    Hostaholic2, I had a big smile after reading your comments above. I've been making some minor corrections to my website lately. If anyone sees a link that does not work, could you please let me know. Thanks in advance.
    Here again is my link for a visit to My Gardens.


    Here is a link that might be useful: Papou's Hosta Gardens

  • bunnycat

    Hi Papou~
    I used your site this year and last year to help determine which hostas to buy. Sometimes the vendors only have pictures of young plants. You have so many gorgeous mature varieties. I love checking back from time-to-time to see what you have added and updated. The before-and-afters are especially useful.

  • gardenfanatic2003

    Papou, after seeing your gorgeous Sun Power, I've decided to order one. How long does it take to get that huge? Not that I'm in a hurry - I'm just wondering how much space to give it when I plant.


  • hostabff

    I second that decision Deanna, I am ordering Sun Power too. Papou's picture is beautiful...plus I have a friend with this hosta and it looks as good as the picture!

  • papou

    Deanna, The 2006 pic of Sun Power measured 29"high x 66"wide...and it's 8 years old. I have never moved it...it is by itself, only surrounded by Astilbes, so it is in evidence. It grows in almost full sun resulting in a nice yellowish foliage...the slugs dont affect it...I dont do anything special...no fertilizer (I did when it was young)...but I WATER A LOT!
    The link below brings you to pics of individual hostas starting with the letter A.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Papou's Individual Hostas

  • softballkid4u

    I have about 300 registered Daylilies and a few Reg. Hosta's about 20, looking for some more, WOULD you be interested in trading some George for some of my Daylilies, thats if you have at least 6 hours of full sun which It looks like that might be slim in your yard, What a nice Garden man. Did you plant them in clumps or double roots?
    VERY nice JOB.


  • hostamanfred

    Papou, I checked out your webside - absolutely marvelous, but then again just I as expected!
    While looking at the different "gardens" I am looking for clues as how they all fit together. Maybe something like a birdseye view with clickable links would be neat. I am sure you can find a way to do it, LOL.
    But here is my question. Except around the drive way, there is not a single weed to be found anywhere. How do you do it. You can't be out there morning to nightfall pulling weeds. So, what what is your secret?
    BTW, one of the be benefits of mass plantings - it kills the weeds!

  • papou

    Hello Manfred, it's good to hear from you!
    I have made an Overview Map(not to scale) on which I have located all the garden beds on the south end of the house.
    I will make another one to show those on the north side of the house overlooking the Ottawa River. The map is on the same page as the Garden Index. You can have a look at it by clicking on the link below.
    As for the weeds, it's been quite hard work for DW and I for the first 3 years...since last year there is much less and less and is being replaced by larger and larger hostas. As you write in your last sentence...mass plantings definitely eliminates weeds.


    Here is a link that might be useful: Index to Papou's Gardens

  • papou

    Manfred, This is the map that I have added to my website...dont know why it's not showing up...here it is:


    Thanks for giving me the idea to do it. I will improve it a bit later.


  • blacky1

    Your garden just blew me away. Fantastic. You have helped me and many others in the hostas forum with your advice, support and ideas. Keep up the great work!!!


  • papou


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