The key thing about having giant hostas, however, is not just buying them, but having the patience to leave them alone. I’m always moving things around and have discovered that if you are constantly ripping up your hostas, they stay insignificant. Witness the sad specimen below.
Four years old and stunted
What do I do when want a similarly bold effect in the sunshine?
Well, I could stick some cannas in the ground, but in my North Pole neighborhood, truly tropical plants seem to look better in pots. Last year, I picked up the weird plant to the right at Clear Brook Farm in Shaftsbury, VT.
A perusal of my Graham Rice Encyclopedia of Perennials suggests that it’s something called Telekia. It develops really dumb-looking flat daisy-ish flowers. But the leaves are so interesting–big, soft, and chartreuse–that I don’t really care about the flowers. I went back to Clear Brook last week hoping to buy another handful of these. No luck.
Of course, overweight is not the only way to explode a scale. Tall is good, too. In addition to a huge collection of Oriental lilies now scraping 7 feet, I have another Clear Brook Farm mystery purchase: Thalictrum flavum, a meadow rue with really beautiful blue leaves like a giant columbine and small limey flowers.
Currently sprawling, but some day, some day…
Unfortunately, I either planted it in too much shade or its stems are just too weak to support its NBA-qualifying height. Think I’ll try moving it out of the shade of the porch and then see where we are.