Hostas forum: hosta liners stem rot?

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Farmer Region: Iowa Hostas Bulbs Clematis Daylilies
Plant and/or Seed Trader
brrejr
Jul 1, 2011 8:05 AM CST
Help!! Crying I purchased for the first time hosta liners and now some of them are getting stem rot. What causes this and how can I prevent it? Any Ideas or suggestions who be most welcomed Lovey dubby
Name: Robert
East Central Alabama z8
SilkKnoll
Jul 1, 2011 3:05 PM CST
HEY YOU GUIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIISE!!

I want to order liners, too, but I've had the same problem before and am more than a bit gun-shy. (Once burned, twice shy, etc.)

I KNOW some (... several, maybe more) of you have the secret to successfully raising hostas from liner plugs, and you've probably suffered through losses like this to gain that expertise. You must be able to feel our pain!

So PLEASE : Wake up and share your knowledge and experience with us.

After all, this is -- at least partially -- what this kind of forum is for. No?

@OP: Remember that liner plugs are test-tube babies that started life in a laboratory and were raised on sugar water in a sterile environment: When they meet you, they are also meeting common airborne microbes and spores for the first time.

Co-ops are very straight-forward in telling participants that they are ordering plugs directly from the Tissue Culture Lab/Grower, but, if you're buying from some other source and suspect that they are selling cheap because they are simply sending out liner plugs as soon as they arrive (before they develop any problems), then be direct about asking how long the seller has had them and under what conditions. If they have been in standard greenhouse or shadehouse conditions for a month or more -- whether the seller has left them in the liner tray or potted them up -- they are more likely to have already come through some of the adjustments to life outside the lab. And ask the seller about transitioning them to pots or garden. If they're not willing to share information, then put them on your "shifty-and-only-out-to-make-a-buck" list and move on.

I can only recommend shade, good air circulation, a well aerated planting medium and a good antibacterial/antiviral/antifungal drench. I've used Banrot, but my latest bff is Consan (an all-around soil sanitizer). I've only recently been able to get Captan (fungicide); many swear by it.

I also just read that some people use Chamomile Tea to keep seedlings from damping off. ........ I'm not above trying anything.

You might want to check out AgriStarts.com. I think they have guidelines about acclimatization somewhere on there (though I don't think they sell hostas). I seem to remember that they recommend using chemicals that are too expensive for not-for-profit enthusiasts like us.
Name: woodthrush
Albrightsville PA
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Art Ferns Lilies Container Gardener
Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: Northeast US Hostas Heucheras Sempervivums Butterflies
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woodthrush
Jul 1, 2011 3:48 PM CST
Make sure that whether you plant them in the garden or pot them, that the crown is even with the soil line. Do no bury the crown too deep. Make sure they are in a well draining area of the garden or that the pots drain well. Heavy soil does not drain well.
Most of the liners from QandZ, Shady Oaks and Walters are usually all a good size.
Some varieties that are new or in heavy demand, may be a bit smaller. I previously posted pics of hosta liners in another thread here.
In a co-op, I don't think anyone buys liners and grows them on before shipping them out. Co-op plants are order based on the number of orders we receive, we order the plants from a wholesaler, receive the order and ship them on to the co-op recipients.
Deb, if all the leaves fell off, feel around for the crown below the soil. If it is still firm, plant it a little higher in the soil. Keep moist, but not soggy and it should resprout in a few weeks.
http://cubits.org/TartWarmersandMore/

New - Plants for Sale - co-op prices
Name: Karen
Watertown, WI (Zone 5a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Hostas Dog Lover
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kaylyred
Jul 1, 2011 4:24 PM CST
Another thing to keep an eye on with Walter's orders (although I hear they've changed it up a bit recently) is the Elle paper pots that they use. Here's a thread on that: http://www.perennialnursery.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=5...

I've only recently worked with liners a bit but I've made a solemn vow that whatever I purchase, whether liner or grown out a bit in a nursery, I will do my best to remove the soil from the roots and plant them bare root. That way, if there is any root crowding involved I'll be able to catch it. I lost a very nice little 'Lakeside Paisley Print' because I didn't take the time to inspect the roots. I have a feeling that if I'd soaked them and taken them down to bare root I wouldn't have had the problem that I did.
Check out Petiole Junction, my garden blog! (I'd love your comments.)
Name: Christine
Southeastern MN (Zone 4a)
Charter ATP Member Heucheras I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Level 2 I sent a postcard to Randy! Keeps Horses
Region: Minnesota Birds Raises cows Cat Lover Hostas Farmer
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Christine27360
Jul 1, 2011 4:27 PM CST
I have clay soil -- so what I have to do is dig hole about the size you would for a big potted plant, then fill hole with miracle grow potting soil, then make little hole in the middle for my little liner, then stick liner in,,,, and water!! ta da!!

Now I have stuck them directly in the clay soil and said good luck! Blinking If the leaves all fall off, I do what Pam suggested -- dig it up, see if the crown is still there, raise it up a bit and call it good!!!

The other thing I have to be aware of is the mulch -- I have to make sure the mulch is away from the base of the hosta.

Hope this helps! I tip my hat to you.
"Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously."
2 Corinthians 9:6
Name: woodthrush
Albrightsville PA
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Art Ferns Lilies Container Gardener
Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: Northeast US Hostas Heucheras Sempervivums Butterflies
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woodthrush
Jul 1, 2011 4:58 PM CST
Good idea with replacing the soil, Christine. Hosta are tough little buggers. As long as the crown and roots are good, you can get a frost/freeze, step on them, deer eat them, and they will come back. Perennials have the will to survive.
http://cubits.org/TartWarmersandMore/

New - Plants for Sale - co-op prices

Farmer Region: Iowa Hostas Bulbs Clematis Daylilies
Plant and/or Seed Trader
brrejr
Jul 1, 2011 7:25 PM CST
I planted these in miracle grow potting soil in pots, looking it looks like I planted the crown a little bit too deep. If the roots still look good will they make it?
Name: woodthrush
Albrightsville PA
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Art Ferns Lilies Container Gardener
Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: Northeast US Hostas Heucheras Sempervivums Butterflies
Image
woodthrush
Jul 1, 2011 7:49 PM CST
Yes, bring them up higher. Feel that hard little nub of a crown? Plant that so it's just peeking out of the soil. They should resprout in a few weeks.
http://cubits.org/TartWarmersandMore/

New - Plants for Sale - co-op prices
Name: Robert
East Central Alabama z8
SilkKnoll
Jul 2, 2011 6:57 PM CST
brrejr said:If the roots still look good will they make it?


Just to be sure we understand: If the crown (the octopus's head) is mushy, but the roots look great, it still won't survive. The plant has to have a firm crown, the central ball (or sometimes stem) that the roots are all connected to, in order to put up new growth.

They won't regenerate from roots alone.


Farmer Region: Iowa Hostas Bulbs Clematis Daylilies
Plant and/or Seed Trader
brrejr
Jul 2, 2011 8:18 PM CST
Well I guess this was a learning experience I'll be a little wary of ordering liners again, I just lost my 4th one. Robert you wrote about "a good antibacterial/antiviral/antifungal drench. I've used Banrot, but my latest bff is
Consan (an all-around soil sanitizer). I've only recently been able to get Captan (fungicide); many swear by it."
Okay, so my question is what kind of potting soil do you use and does the Consan come in liquid form or dry?

Name: woodthrush
Albrightsville PA
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Art Ferns Lilies Container Gardener
Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: Northeast US Hostas Heucheras Sempervivums Butterflies
Image
woodthrush
Jul 3, 2011 5:33 AM CST
Measure all that stuff carefully and only use as often as the labels say. Too much of a good thing can kill a plant too. Especially if it's small and struggling already.
I take it you haven't found any part of the crown left? And just curious, what were the varieties that you lost? Did they have white centers, or green?
http://cubits.org/TartWarmersandMore/

New - Plants for Sale - co-op prices
Name: Christine
Southeastern MN (Zone 4a)
Charter ATP Member Heucheras I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Level 2 I sent a postcard to Randy! Keeps Horses
Region: Minnesota Birds Raises cows Cat Lover Hostas Farmer
Image
Christine27360
Jul 3, 2011 9:56 AM CST
That is so sad Brrejr!!! I really have had great luck with Liners and really dont do anything special!!

I thought I lost a bunch this spring but they just came up a little later than the more established Hostas. :thumbsup:

Here's to wishing yours come back!!
"Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously."
2 Corinthians 9:6

Farmer Region: Iowa Hostas Bulbs Clematis Daylilies
Plant and/or Seed Trader
brrejr
Jul 5, 2011 2:10 PM CST
Here's the list of the liners I lost all 3 Roller Roaster Ride, 2 First Frost, 1 Count your blessing, and 1 Nifty Fifty. I ordered 3 of 6 different ones and down to 12. Looking some I did plant too deep, the others I don't know what happened. Kinda of fustrated!! Grumbling Angry Crying
Name: Christine
Southeastern MN (Zone 4a)
Charter ATP Member Heucheras I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Level 2 I sent a postcard to Randy! Keeps Horses
Region: Minnesota Birds Raises cows Cat Lover Hostas Farmer
Image
Christine27360
Jul 5, 2011 6:56 PM CST
I may have an extra eye I could send you of Roller Coaster Ride and Count Your Blessings and Nifty Fifty!! Let me go and look to see how big these are as I just planted them last year! SOmetimes they take off and grow fast and others are slow to grow.

I'll let you know what I find! Smiling

Group hug
"Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously."
2 Corinthians 9:6

Farmer Region: Iowa Hostas Bulbs Clematis Daylilies
Plant and/or Seed Trader
brrejr
Jul 5, 2011 8:22 PM CST
Really??? Lovey dubby OH mY GOODNESS, Thank you!!
N. Middlesex County, MA
Charter ATP Member Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: Northeast US
wha
Jul 13, 2011 1:54 PM CST
interesting to read this thread - i have been getting a lot of liners in the last year or two and really do not do anything special - most are put into containers and "planted" out of sight until ready to go out in public

last fall i went with miracle grow soil and the 25 or so i ordered did ok was hoping for more growth, although some did very well - i have since asked my local nursery to special order metro mix 510 which i good friend told me is great and is used by nursery growers - this was confirmed when the nursery person said she used it when she worker for a grower - we shall see how they have grown since last year

have not paid too much attention about how deep i am planting them - no stem rot here to date.
Bill

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