In general, most hosta varieties like a shady spot in your garden. But just like the sun, shade can vary in intensity too. Hostas prefer dappled shade rather than a dense canopy of shade. For example, the filtered light offered by a high canopy of trees is much more suitable than the dark recesses of a low growing evergreen. Some varieties actually prefer some sun, but never the blazing heat of afternoon sun. Some examples that can handle morning sun are the impressive Sum and Substance, On Stage and Gold Standard. A touch of sun allows their beautiful coloration to fully develop. Another consideration when sighting your hosta is the exposure to wind. Because they have such a large leaf surface, hostas are more readily subject to scorching and drying out in an unprotected area. So consider placing your hostas in a sheltered location. This can be done with an existing tree line, companion plantings of shrubs or tall perennials and other natural or man-made wind breaks. Lastly, you may need to consider how much your hosta will have to compete with shallow-rooted trees or shrubs. If you dig your planting hole and discover a mass of competing roots, consider another location for your hosta and choose to plant more shallow rooted, shade loving plants there, like lamium or ferns.
by Tammy Borden
excerpt from the Summer 2009 edition of the OCMGA Newsletter
Posted by Kim