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Re: 2004 Hosta registrations

  • Subject: Re: 2004 Hosta registrations
  • From: "Bobby Baxter - Wake Forest, NC" irismoose@daylily.net
  • Date: Mon, 30 May 2005 10:18:21 -0400

Bill, you bring up some really great points and commenting on the different and/or opposing concepts or factions is the best approach. I feel this is one debate that will never win total support in either direction but 100% support in anything is usually just a dream.

As the ICRA it is not up to the Hosta Society to determine the worthiness of the plant for registration. Maintaining an accurate record of the cultivar's characteristics and ensuring the international standards of plant registration are followed is the function of the ICRA. However, there is nothing wrong with AHosS "recommending" certain standards (I would hate to be part of the team coming up with that statement).

Of course, one does not have to be a member of the AHosS to register a new hosta. As hostas continue to grow in popularity, the number of backyard hybridizers will increase, too. Depending on one's position this can be seen as a blessing or tragedy.

This morning I commented in several off-list messages that I am very glad for the diversity of hosta growing and am glad other people garden in their own chosen fashion. It sure would be boring if we all did things the same way and shared the same opinion. If we were of the same opinion then this conversation would never take place, these forums probably would not exist, and not as many people would be enjoying hostas. The plants are nice, but the people make the adventure special.

On that thought... I sure have been enjoying the newest Hosta Journal and reflections of the past.

Happy Moose Gardens

----- Original Message ----- From: "Bill Meyer" <njhosta@hotmail.com>
To: <hosta-open@hort.net>
Sent: Monday, May 30, 2005 9:42 AM
Subject: Re: 2004 Hosta registrations

Hi Everyone,
This part about silly names brings up another problem with hosta
registering - why do we register and which ones should be registered? This
is another area where we all seem to have different opinions in the lack of
a clear official statement from the AHS on the subject. Some feel it is a
mark of quality that a plant was registered, while others feel that any
plant that was named should be registered.
Many of our top introducers have been heard saying "It isn't good
enough to register" about a plant that they named and released to someone.
This leads many to the belief that registration is some sort of mark of
quality. Among those who do not introduce hostas, it is common for many to
rate the registrations based on whether the plant was "worthy". Some even
think the Registrar judges whether plants are good enough.
On the other hand, another group thinks that the registration of
plants is simply the creation of a database of plants that are out there,
and that all named plants (other than those that never leave the originators
garden, maybe) should be logged. They do not consider the quality of a plant
or a name as a factor. They just look at it as taking notes for posterity.
Dan and Lu seem here to represent both sides of the coin in this
debate. As a database builder Lu records the information regardless of the
quality of the plant or name, while Dan considers whether a plant or name is
worthy to be recorded. This is an area the AHS needs to be more specific
about in its role as the ICRA.
A few years back we had a battle royale between two camps on various
issues that had to do with the AHS trying to force the issue on registering
without addressing some of the problems with the current system. Most of the
conflict was rooted in there being different interpretations with no
official comment from the AHS on the issues. This problem has its roots back
in the beginning of the society when there weren't many hostas yet and they
quickly converted existing systems for other plants. Because things were not
spelled out very clearly in the beginning, many of the society's most
prominent introducers adopted different interpretations of the rules. At one
extreme some registered anything, even other people's plants, as if it was a
competition to see who could register the most. At the other extreme, some
cut their plants often enough that they never got around to seeing mature
plants to collect data on and never registered much at all. All of this is
just growing pains for a society with an ever-expanding number of named
cultivars, but the AHS does need to make it clear what should be registered
and when. Until it makes clear statements on these issues, the problems will
continue because they are rooted in honest beliefs about what people think
registration is supposed to be.
........Bill Meyer
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