Hostas forum: Dream Queen Might Be Dying

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Name: Autumn May
MI, USA
Charter ATP Member
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rivada
Jun 22, 2011 10:49 AM CST
Thumb of 2011-06-22/rivada/add424
So here is a healthy dream queen in its second year from a mere division.

This Spring I purchased an older dream queen from a grocery store, which I will never do again. Something about it didn't seem right after planting. The green grew super dark, like it was saturated. Granted we got a ton of unexpected rain AND the soil where it was, was likely just too moist (and largely clay).
Thumb of 2011-06-22/rivada/d84f9d
(note - excessive glisten is because I washed it off)

It also had a stalk up the center and sprouted more hosta leaves, like a second story hosta, and I wondered if it was a mutation. As that part of the plant really began to suffer, I chopped it off:

Thumb of 2011-06-22/rivada/177013

Upon close examination I did not spot tobacco or X symptoms. No ink bleed, no vein damage, nothing quite like everything I've researched. After relocating and slicing away all of the "saturated" parts I found new DQ leaves sprouting up from the soil under it and they have the light/healthy green start that my other DQ is showing.

So my question is. What is your guys' experiences with over-watering and how it affects the appearance of a hosta? What about the "second tier" on the Dream Queen - normal, mutation, ? How dark does the green on your DQs get?

Should I just put it out of its misery or wait and see?
N. Middlesex County, MA
Charter ATP Member Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: Northeast US
wha
Jun 22, 2011 11:14 AM CST
wait and see

i do not water my hosta's - mother nature does that
Bill
Name: CJ
Iowa (Zone 5a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Charter ATP Member Region: Iowa Hostas Daylilies Sempervivums
Lilies Garden Art Sedums Ferns Hellebores Heucheras
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AlwaysWeeding
Jun 22, 2011 12:34 PM CST
Different amounts of light affect the colors in a hosta. I don't think however, that this is the problem. The plant you got from the grocery store is not likely Dream Queen. It appears too dark.

As far as the problems you were having:
1) sometimes due to weather, you will get the 'second story' effect and this is normal. Nothing wrong with the hosta
2) If your hosta just wasted away, there could have been voles eating the roots. Check to see if there are many/any roots when this is happening. Another reason for wasting away is competition from surrounding plantings (espcially a problem when planting under Maple trees). Move the plant to a better location and it may recover.
Name: Autumn May
MI, USA
Charter ATP Member
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rivada
Jun 22, 2011 1:11 PM CST
Thanks for the ideas. When I pulled on the neighboring hosta, which had withered away, the leaves came right up, as if attached to no roots at all. It's like a Hosta Death Spot in my garden.


Name: Diann
Iowa (Zone 5a)
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member Enjoys or suffers cold winters Cat Lover Region: Iowa Hostas
Lilies Peonies
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Ticker
Jun 22, 2011 1:21 PM CST

Moderator

You might want to dig down and see what you find in the spot where the hostas withered away. With all this wet weather you could also have crown rot also known as Southern Blight. http://www.hostalibrary.org/diseases/Blight.html



Name: Autumn May
MI, USA
Charter ATP Member
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rivada
Jun 22, 2011 5:12 PM CST
Has anyone had good experience treating their soil with a watered spray of bleach and baby shampoo to kill fungus? I might do that to the area in question.

Name: Diann
Iowa (Zone 5a)
Forum moderator Charter ATP Member Enjoys or suffers cold winters Cat Lover Region: Iowa Hostas
Lilies Peonies
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Ticker
Jun 23, 2011 7:47 AM CST

Moderator

I think some folks use a 9 to 1 ratio of water to bleach to kill slug eggs. I don't think that would hurt your plant to use that on it. Just don't do it on a sunny day. :)
Name: Autumn May
MI, USA
Charter ATP Member
Image
rivada
Jun 23, 2011 2:45 PM CST
I sprayed my hosta bed with the solution. It's raining AGAIN today. Will repeat over the weekend and update next week. Thanks for the ideas.

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