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Re: H. 'Liberty', will the edge deteriorate?

  • Subject: Re: H. 'Liberty', will the edge deteriorate?
  • From: "Bill Meyer" <njhosta@hotmail.com>
  • Date: Thu, 14 Oct 2004 23:10:41 -0400

Hi Ray,
      Well, the white tissue is pretty much non-functional tissue. It may do
a little photosynthesis when it has some early color, but it is pretty much
useless as far as food production goes. Plants which have white tissue will
quickly shed any divisions that come up solid white. When I say white, I am
referring to functionally white tissue, which may be cream or pale green or
even fairly yellow. Essentially, the white tissue is a mistake the plant
made when it was trying to make some good productive green tissue.
       If we look at it that way, it is a bonus that hostas keep that
superfluous but pretty tissue as long as they do. "Melting Out" is really
the plant shedding unnecessary nonfunctioning tissue and has nothing to do
with the sun or anything else. Insufficient water may cause the plant to get
rid of it sooner, but most other environmental factors don't seem to be
involved. Possibly certain soil elements might be a factor, but nobody knows
at this time.
        Now that we have that, there's no probably no relevance to how wide
the margin is. The amount of stress on a plant can hasten it's "decision" to
stop supplying water from the roots to white tissue, but it's probably a
genetic thing how long a given cultivar will hold it. Therre's lots of
questions - Will white polyploid tissue hold up better or worse than white
diploid tissue? Will different white tissue sports from the same plant hold
up equally well? and more that can only be answered by watching the plants
to see how they do.

..................Bill Meyer

> Pictures were posted on "hostapix," but no response to the question below.
> Pictures of a somewhat mature clump of 'Liberty' with the really wide edge
> are gorgeous, but will the edge become problematic? Seems like that wide
of a
> light colored edge would deteriorate, at least in the in Midwest. Any
> Ray Rodgers, Bartonville, IL, Zone 5
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