Pic of the Day--Fried Bananas

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Pic of the Day--Fried Bananas

Postby Hank Zumach » Apr 10, 2007 9:33 am

Hi All--Fried Bananas has been providing a nice, bright spot in a shady spot since 2001. Wade & Gatton report that the plant can take full sun without burning. The variety does have a problem passing the 10 foot rule, however. Starting in 2001 its measurements have been 25x15, 38x22, 45x23, (unknown for 2004), 56x28 and 65x30 in 2006. That puts it past Wade & Gatton's listing of "medium" sized, the Hosta Library's 36x24 and Lemke's 18x10. So, we have another hosta variety with different sets of descriptions. Slugs have been controllable.

Registry - http://www.hostaregistrar.org/detail.ph ... %20Bananas
MyHostas - http://myhostas.be/db/hostas/Fried+Bananas
Hosta Library - http://www.hostalibrary.org/f/friedbananas.html

The pix are from 2002, 2004, and 2006.
Fried Bananas 6-24-02c 275.jpg

Fried Bananas 7-2-04c.JPG

Fried Bananas 6-26-06c 031.jpg
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Pic of the Day--Fried Bananas

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Postby eastwood2007 » Apr 10, 2007 10:11 am

That is a beautiful hosta...I have only seen smaller ones in real life. Great pics! Thanks... :D
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Postby renaldo75 » Apr 10, 2007 11:12 am

It sure looks good in that 2006 pic!! 8-) Mine had a setback a couple of years ago & is about a 1/4-1/3 the size of the Fried Green Tomatoes next to it.
GO HAWKEYES!!!

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Postby jgh » Apr 10, 2007 11:27 am

I hate to be repeatitive and redundant and go over this ground again... but if you aren't familiar with this heritage, its worth mentioning...

The hosta species plantaginea has two great characteristics for the garden. It is very sun tolerant, and it has great large white fragrant flowers. These make pretty good cut flowers, BTW.

The drawbacks of plantaginea, in my opinion, are that it has a tendency toward an indistinct chartreuse coloration and so-so form... meaning that except when in flower, it doesn't even meet the 5 foot rule.

But it has proved possible to carry both of those great traits - sun tolerance and fragrance - into multiple generations of hybrids and sports of those hybrids.

Paul Aden deserves a place in the HHF (Hosta Hall of Fame - exists only in my mind so far - but wouldn't it be cool to do a national hosta garden and HHF!) for his hybridization of Fragrant Bouquet, registered in 1982. The next great breakthrough was Solberg's registration of the FB sport, Guacamole in 1994. From Guacamole we've gotten a great family of sports including Avocado, Stained Glass... and the two single colored sports, Fried Bananas and Fried Green Tomatoes. They all have good sun tolerance, great flowers... and the added bonus that they grow very rapidly with little care!

I've ranted before about the registration of unwanted solid color plants coming from tc... how plants that should have been culls got named and marketed... but these two deserved to be named and grown. One can do a wonderful planting with the three plants... Guacamole and FB and FGT... the three plants are almost identical in size and leaf size and character... three variation on the same theme, blooming at the same time with an amazing fragrance. Some would add Stained Glass and Avocado to the planting.

This is another case where the size given in the registration and listings just doesn't make sense. Guacamole is listed as a large hosta - Zilis says 64". FGT is listed at 59". You'd expect the sibling to be similar in size. Of course, in Hank's garden, they get larger still! I think it is another of the negative results of rushing to register plants without growing them on to maturity. Bob Solberg is a great hosta man, but the business of introducing new hostas is pretty competitive... I think he needed to get these less-desireable tcs to market along with the desireable Guacamole.

In 1994 I started a new garden and put in Fragrant King, Stained Glass, Fragrant Dream, FGT, FB, plantaginea Aphrodite, and Avocado... I don't have any current photos, but a person could swoon walking by this planting in bloom on a warm day.

When people are considering a new hosta planting, I always suggest a combination using these varieties, especially for a bright location.

So maybe not a 10' hosta by itself... but a 20' hosta when planted as part of a fragrant group!
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Postby newtohosta-no more » Apr 10, 2007 6:32 pm

Beautiful specimens! I have a soft spot for those yellow/gold ones so I do love this one. :wink:
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Postby LucyGoose » Apr 10, 2007 8:18 pm

Beautiful pictures!! Another one I do not have....

Thanks!!
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Postby Roxanne » Apr 10, 2007 8:57 pm

I have Fried Bananas, where it gets proper sun and water. It is huge, blooms great. However, it has always been a "muddy gold" color here, never impressing me once, aside from the growth rate. :)
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