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Welcome to  HOS-TAS - "Beautiful plants for shady places"

For all enquiries and orders, please contact;
Amanda Blake
ph: 03 6492 3146


27th July 2020: NOTICE - Reluctant Sale

Sadly, due to my declining health, I am having to sell my collection of hostas.
Anyone interested in purchasing some or all of the plants and/or equipment, please email me via the website.

PLEASE NOTE: I am not able to take or ship divisions.
Plants must be picked up at the nursery at Lower Barrington.

I want to thank everyone for their support over the years.
It has been a pleasure to share my love of these wonderful, shade tolerant plants with you.

Regards, Amanda.

The Plants

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The World's best perennial for shaded and semi-shaded areas:

Hostas are natives of the Far East, with their centre of distribution being Japan. Outlying species occur in China and Korea. Since their introduction to West in the late 1700's, their popularity has grown in leaps and bounds. There are now over 7,000 hosta names out there, if not the hosta plants themselves. Hos-Tas aims to offer the best of the old and new varieties. Currently we have close to 400 cultivars growing in large shade houses.

Gardeners all over the world are discovering the joys of growing hostas These shade tolerant perennials remain attractive from when they emerge in spring until the autumn frosts. The spectrum of gold, yellow, green and blue are spectacular. They will grow in nearly all soil conditions, but the better the conditions the better your hostas will be. Scapes sway with flowers coloured, from dark purple shades through to white from early summer.

Some Hosta flowers have stripes, but only some are fragrant, especially in the evening, when the scent will be stronger. Most find the scent, somewhere a cross between a daffodil and a lily and quite sweet but not overbearing. Hos-Tas is continually adding and upgrading our Hosta range. We do not sell immature plants or tissue-culture plants. Nor do we import them.

For best performance: * It is a misconception that they are shade loving, this is not true; Hostas tolerate and grow in the shade. But all plants require some sun whether it is full, mottled or some morning sun.
* A couple of hours of morning or late afternoon sun will encourage better colour, especially with the gold colours. A good rule of thumb is no more than 20% full sun in a given day.
* Free draining, slightly acid soil that is high in organic matter.
* Adequate water in summer months is necessary for proper growth. Hostas do not tolerate drought or extreme heat and will go into heat dormancy if grown in hot climates.
* Feed in spring with slow release high nitrogen fertiliser.
* Can be transplanted at any time of the year, but keep as much soil medium on root system (ball) while actively growing and keep plants well watered.
* Slugs and snail are the major insect problem; keep these under control with snail bait (dry saw dust is an environmentally friendly way of repelling the slugs and snails).

The longer Hostas are left undivided the better they will look, although some do require regular division. Division can be done at any time provided adequate water is supplied.

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How to Find Us

HOS-TAS is situated in beautiful northwestern Tasmania between Devonport and Sheffield.

Hos-tas Hosta Farm is located at:

1044 Sheffield Road
Lower Barrington 7306

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Commonly Asked Questions About Hostas

  • Will hostas grow in the sun?
    Some hostas are sun tolerant but still need protection from the hot afternoon sun. The more sun they receive, the more moisture is needed at the roots.
    Hostas thrive when grown in dappled shade or when they receive a couple of hours of early morning sun.
    Even though hostas are said to be shade loving, they are actually shade tolerant. They will not thrive in the complete absence of sun.

  • What kind of soil do I need to grow hostas?
    Hostas grow best in a deeply dug, rich loam with a pH of about 6.

  • What kind of trees are best for growing hostas under?
    The best trees are those that are NOT shallow rooted. Hostas do not compete well with other roots. Trees that do not have shallow surface roots; have smaller leaves and provide a canopy of dappled shade, (not intense shade) will provide the best environment. If the area for the hosta bed has mature trees that have branches growing close to the ground, you will need to trim off the lower branches to allow light to penetrate the garden bed.

  • What kind of pests and diseases do hostas have?
    Snails and slugs are the most troublesome pests. They will devour the leaves, leaving them shredded and unsightly. The most effective way of reducing their populations is to use a good quality bait. Apply early in spring before the hostas emerge and as often as needed during the growing season, especially after rain or heavy dew. Just remember that slug and snail bait is a poison and care should be taken when used where pets are present. There are some pet friendly products on the market but always read the label. Unless you use a rain fast product, it will need to be re-applied after rain or heavy watering.
    Alternatively, you can go out at night and collect the pests in a container. Chickens and chooks love them.

  • Are hostas drought tolerant?
    No. Hostas are natives of areas of high rainfall in Japan, China and Korea and require plenty of moisture at the roots during dry weather. For them to thrive, it is essential to ensure a regular supply of water during the growing season. They require moist but well drained soil.

  • What is a sport?
    A sport is a mutation produced from a plant. This mutation is often completely different to the parent plant. It can be variegated, have a different leaf shape or be a different colour. Sporting is how many new cultivars are produced.

  • Can hostas be grown inside as house plants?
    No. hostas are garden plants and will not survive inside. They can be put inside for a very short time as a decoration, but need to be moved back outside after a short time.

  • Do hostas lose their leaves in the winter?
    Yes. Hostas are true perennials. They die back completely in the winter and emerge again each spring.

  • Are hostas frost tolerant?
    Yes. Hostas die back completely in the winter so are unaffected by freezing temperatures.

  • Can I grow hostas in the tropics?
    No, hostas will not tolerate the intense heat of the tropics. They will enter heat dormancy and die back. They may come back for a year or two but will gradually decline and die completely. Hostas require a minimum of 5 to 6 weeks of winter temperatures at or below 4 degrees (40F) in order to thrive.

  • Can I grow hostas in pots?
    Yes, most hostas grow well in pots provided they have ample room for their root system and are given plenty of moisture and protection from the hot sun and drying winds.

  • Do hostas flower?
    Yes, hostas produce spikes of lovely bell shaped flowers in late spring/summer. The flowers can be purple, white or pale lavender. Some are fragrant.

  • Can I grow new plants from the seed produced?
    Yes, some hosta seed is viable however being hybrids, the plants produced will not be the same as the parent plants. You will not be able to produce variegated seedlings unless you use a "streaked" pod parent. (This is a complicated hybridizing subject). Most seedlings produced will be plain green, blue or gold, depending on the other hostas in the garden that cross pollinated.

  • Why is my variegated hosta producing solid colour leaves?
    Some plants typically try to revert to their original parentage. This mostly happens if the plant is a sport. Many solid colour hostas are stronger growing and more prolific than a variegated sport. The plant will send up a solid growth. If this is allowed to grow, then the plant will continue to send up more solid growths and eventually the strongest growths will take over and the plant will stop sending up variegated shoots completely. This is called reverting or reversion. If your variegated hosta sends up solid colour shoots, immediately remove them with a sharp pointed knife that has been dipped in chlorine bleach. Some plants tend to try and revert more than others so be diligent in removing the shoots.

  • Why does my blue hosta turn green in summer?
    The "blue" on a hosta leaf is actually a wax coating. You can rub this coating off if you handle the leaves or brush them when you walk by. This wax coating actually melts off in the heat of summer, revealing the true leaf colour. In cooler climates, many blue hostas will retain the blue much longer, sometimes for the entire season. DonŐt worry, when the plant emerges each spring, it will again produce the lovely, blue leaves. Some hostas retain their blue colour in summer much longer than others.

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