Doug Beilstein,
AHS President

President's Message
January 2013

Can you believe it? It's 2013...

Well, the snow is a-fallin’, and the winds they are a-blowin’, and all is well for our midwinter's nap. But before you do, please check your "Bucket List". At the top has to be your New Year's Resolutions, and topping that list:

Renew your American Hosta Society membership

For us to continue our success as a society, it is imperative that our membership numbers increase. Please, help us accomplish that and renew today.

To renew your membership click on AHS Membership Renewal or go to the AHS website at and click on Membership Renewal on the page links at the left.

Next up on the "Bucket List"... plan to attend a premier hosta event this year! Choices include (but are not limited to) the MRHS Winter Scientific Meeting in Lisle, IL (Winter Scientific Meeting) in just a few days, Hosta College in Piqua, OH (Hosta College) in mid-March, and in mid-June, the American Hosta Society’s National Convention in Milwaukee, WI (Escape to Wisconsin).

Finally, as thoughts of spring enter our heads (if you’re still taking your midwinter's nap), don't forget that your local club is dreaming of your attendance, too!!!

Happy New Year to all, and to all a good night.
(And may hosta pips enter all of your dreams!!!)

Later, Doug                                                 Contact Doug Beilstein

Don Dean,
AHS Online Auction Chair

AHS Online Auction

Hard to believe yet one more year has elapsed and brings us to our eleventh annual American Hosta Society online auction; mark your calendars for January 12th - 26th. Events such as this require the efforts of many volunteers, representing numerous hours of dedicated time. Thanks go out to those who are instrumental in providing support, creating the site, spreading the information, donating materials being sold, and all those choosing to support the AHS with their bidding. Special thanks to Bob Axmear for allowing us to use his Hosta Library site again this year.

Each year many of you have kept our hosta society in mind and given generously. Let’s give it a go again this year. Besides, now that the hustle and bustle of the holidays has ended, we all love to look at great pictures and dream of our next treasure to arrive in the mail next spring.

If you would still like to donate to the auction, contact me NOW. Include a paragraph description and digital photo. I can help with both of these, often getting back to you via email with questions or verification of info.

All proceeds go directly to the society’s treasury. Auctions are a primary source of revenue to bring one of the world’s best horticultural journals to its members and libraries across North America and abroad. The Hosta Journal can only stand to increase its standing as a premier publication as a result of all of your support.

Joanna Kovalcsik, AKA Jojo, has joined me again this year to assist with donation descriptions!

We are set up to receive payments through the AHS website, something that has worked well the past few years. All other elements of the auction remain intact. Auction access and instructions will be available via a link found on the AHS home page and on the Hosta Library website. Once again, I will post any critical information, reminders, and tips in the “Non-bid Important News” category of the auction site. Be sure to peek at these periodically for updates or corrections as well.

Please remind your friends, hosta club members, and other hosta fans
to join us January 12th - 26th.

American Hosta Society                             Hosta Library

Don                                                                         Contact Don Dean

Sandie Markland,
AHS Membership Secretary


The mailing list for the first issue of the 2013 Hosta Journal will be generated early in the year, and the issue is expected to begin arriving in members' mailboxes in early spring. As usual, your 2013 AHS Membership Card will be printed on the mailing label which accompanies that issue. If you do not receive your copy of this Journal by the 15th of May, please contact the AHS Membership Secretary to secure a replacement issue. There will be no membership card with the replacement issue.

It is important to keep the AHS Membership Secretary informed of changes in your contact information. If you do not receive AHS mailings due to an unreported change of address, a $6.00 payment is required to cover the cost of shipping and handling for the replacement issue. Please send address changes as promptly as possible to Individuals who travel between summer and winter homes should advise the Membership Secretary of their change of address approximately 6 weeks in advance.

All AHS Memberships run from January 1 through December 31 regardless of when an individual joins or renews. The year of your membership expiration immediately follows your name on the mailing sheet which accompanies each mailing you receive from the AHS. The second Journal mailing of each year (due out in late summer/early fall) is always accompanied by a renewal form. It is important to renew in a timely manner in order to avoid the $5.00 late fee which MUST be applied to all renewals mailed or entered online after January 15th of each calendar year.

If you have not renewed for 2013, please do so as quickly as possible - we don’t want you to miss out on a single thing! If you are uncertain as to the current status of your membership, please do not hesitate to contact me via email, and I will get right back to you!

AHS Memberships make great gifts for your gardening
friends - or great door prizes for your local club events!

Sandie                                                             Contact Sandie Markland

Josh Spece,
AHS Web Editor-in-Chief

2012 AHS Popularity Poll

It is time to cast your votes for the annual AHS Hosta Popularity Poll! Think of warmer days and take a 'mental' stroll through your garden to refresh your memory of your favorite hostas, then log on and vote.

Popularity Poll voting is only open to AHS members so once you are on the American Hosta Society website (click on the link below), click the “Members” link along the left side of the page. You will then need to enter the member's password. The password is published in The Hosta Journal. If you do not have your journal handy, you can contact the AHS Membership Secretary for the password. Once you enter the password, click “Submit”AHS Website

You are now logged into the "Members Only" area of the website. You can access the Popularity Poll voting page by clicking the “Popularity Poll” link on the left side of the page.

Once you are on the Popularity Poll voting page scroll down to the bold heading that says “OnlineVoting” and follow the instructions on the page to cast your votes.

It is very important to NOT press the Enter or Return key on your keyboard after you begin entering your votes! Doing so will submit your ballot before it is complete. (Unfortunately, this is a “feature” of the polling service the AHS uses and is beyond our control.)
Anyone who has trouble voting is more than welcome to contact me for help!

Josh                                                         Contact Josh Spece

Michael Shadrack,
Vice President Awards and Honors

Awards and Honors
The President's Wall

The American Hosta Society would again like to honor, for their distinguished service, those members of local Hosta Societies who have for years been the backbone of their local group. Last year was the first time I asked local societies to nominate members for this award, and I have to admit to several teething problems in my system. I am determined to do better this year.  

The most up-to-date list of contacts with local societies that we have is the one maintained by Mary Bardens of the Newsletter Editors. By now, all editors on that list should have received from me a letter which I have asked you to bring to the attention of your Society’s President and Board.

The letter again asks local Societies to nominate two such people before the 1st of April this year. Last year it quickly became obvious that we were going to be unable to include all the wonderful things said about the person nominated on the certificate sent to local societies. The certificate is merely an expression of appreciation – the kind words of thanks will need to be said locally.

By now, all but one Society will have received signed certificates on parchment for each of the members they nominated and the names of those people appear on a brick in the ‘President’s Wall of Honor’ that can be found on the AHS website at

Nominations can be sent to me by mail or email before April 1, 2013. The only difference in the procedure this year is a request that included with the nomination is the name and address of the person to whom the signed certificates are to be sent. They will be mailed soon after the AHS June Board meeting for local presentation.

The Alex J. Summers Distinguished Service Award

The Eunice Fisher Distinguished Merit Award

Readers are also reminded that nominations for the AHS Top Awards - The Alex J. Summers Distinguished Merit Award and the Eunice Fisher Distinguished Hybridizer Award should reach me before April 1, 2013. Nomination forms can be found in the 2012 Online Journal or can be forwarded on request.

Michael                                                           Contact Michael Shadrack

Rob Mortko,
Vice President Genus Hosta

New AHS Nematode Research Program

At the recent Fall AHS Executive Committee Board Meeting, a new foliar nematode research program was presented, proposed and approved. We might normally wait until the current HVX research project was complete to introduce a new research program. However, the feedback from both you and the AHS Board was clear - get some answers to the growing nematode problem and get them ASAP.

Letters have been sent to all local and regional hosta societies formally announcing details of the proposed research program and soliciting their financial support. We would also appreciate your individual support.

The research will be performed at The Ohio State University under the capable leadership of Dr. Parwinder Grewal. You may recall that Dr. Grewal has performed previous nematode research for the AHS. Dr. Grewal has served on the Executive Board of the Society of Nematologists and continues to be the leading foliar nematode researcher in the U.S. As we looked at Nematologists around the country to lead this effort, it became clear that Dr. Grewal was the most qualified candidate.

The proposed research will focus on the entire nematode life cycle. Most important is defining their seasonal movement both upward and downward before we begin testing and development of an integrated approach to manage foliar nematodes. Our hope is that they may in fact be much easier to treat if we know when they are on the move.

The $100,000 research program will be funded in major part by a matching grant program available from Ohio State. We hope to hear about the OSU matching grant award in early April. That still leaves $50,000 to be funded by the AHS, local/regional hosta societies, and interested individuals. The AHS approved $5000 in its 2013 budget to help fund the project. The remaining $45,000 will be a challenging amount to raise during these economic times, but hopefully achievable given the level of prior interest expressed by our membership. Since foliar nematodes (Aphelenchoides fragariae and A. ritzemabosi) are not specific to hosta alone, we are also soliciting support from related plant societies and plant trade associations.

We hope that we can fund the entire proposed scope of research. Our intent is to confirm our available funding level this spring with the research to begin shortly thereafter. We expect completion of this project within two calendar years.

You can read more about the nematode research program on the AHS website. Also included are a donation form and a copy of Dr. Grewal’s proposal.

Foliar Nematode Research Program

Thank you in advance for your support. Together, let’s beat the growing foliar nematode problem.

Rob                                                                          Contact Rob Mortko

HVX Research Correction

In the last AHS e-Newsletter, I included a progress report from Dr. Lockhart. It was reported that Dr. Lockhart had collected seed from an HVX-infected Hosta ‘Krossa Regal’. Many astute hybridizers were quick to point out that ‘Krossa Regal’ rarely (if ever) sets seed. Dr. Lockhart responded that this was in error and that seed was actually collected from ‘Tokudama Flavocircinalis’.

Josh Spece,
AHS Web Editor-in-Chief

The AHS Website – A Year In Review

The end of the year is a natural time to look back over the past twelve months. We hostaholics love to reflect on our gardens…what grew well, what challenges we faced, and what we want to change or add in the season ahead. One of my favorite things to do is look back through my photos from hosta conventions and other garden events from the season past and remember the great times I shared with hosta friends.

In between browsing hosta catalogs and dreaming of spring, here are a few interesting statistics about the AHS website from 2012.

54,369 different users viewed the website

227,944 pages were viewed

The top 10 countries the AHS website was viewed from:

The top 10 cities the AHS website was viewed from:

An interesting side note…the little town of Pella, Iowa (population 10,360) is 1/263 the size of Chicago, Illinois (population 2,707,120), but is just 180 website visitors behind Chicago. Pella must be home to an extraordinarily high concentration of hosta lovers or a few disturbingly fanatic ones. Likely a combination of both!

The top 10 most viewed pages on the AHS website:

1.  The American Hosta Society Index Page

 2.  About Hosta

 3.  Establishing Hosta

 4.  American Hosta Society Photo Gallery

 5.  AHS Display Gardens

 6.  Buying Hosta

 7.  Hosta Species and Cultivar Definitions

 8.  Local Hosta Societies

 9.  AHS Membership

10. The American Hosta Society National Convention

Mary Ann Metz,
Vice President Member Services

Member Services

Hi All,

Happy New Year! I’m the new kid on the block, and although I have been a member of the AHS for a while, I have never had the opportunity to serve. This is quite an honor.

My first task is to find out what the members of the AHS expect from their society and from me. I welcome any and all ideas about what you would like to see or have happen throughout the year, at conventions, in The Hosta Journal or the Online Journal.

As I write this, the Executive Committee is working diligently to improve several issues that have been presented to us. One very important issue is that we actually don’t know enough about our members. Do you have an expertise or passion that you would like to share with the AHS? We probably don’t know if you do. Computer expertise, botany expertise, accounting expertise, advertising know-how, growing plants, photography - absolutely anything that you might want to share is important.

My first question: would you fill out an online questionnaire? My next question: if a questionnaire were kept on the AHS website would you update your information?

So, in case you haven’t guessed, we are actually trying to move into the 21st century. The committee is considering an electronic membership. This would be a full membership, but with no printed material mailed. Only electronic communications would be available for this type of membership. That means no The Hosta Journal or other printed materials. What do you think? Please let me know.

We would like to create a website that has instructional videos. If you have any ideas about instructional content, or for that matter website design, or what you would like the website to be, please share them with me. Thanks!

Best Regards to All,

Mary Ann                                                    Contact Mary Ann Metz

Chuck Zdeb,
Vice President Judging and Exhibitions

Judging and Exhibitions

2013 is upon us, and the time for a new Benedict Garden Performance Award ballot is here. Randy Goodwin is sending reminders to the list of originators/hybridizers and registrants with known addresses. As we are rebuilding the address list, there may be some current addresses which are unknown to us. If you do not receive a nomination ballot, please contact Randy Goodwin or me, and we will get a nomination form to you.

Last year, because of some cloudy history with regards to whom credit should be given for the introduction of certain hosta cultivars, there was some ballot confusion. Because some felt that the Benedict Award system should be used to deny the entry for some cultivars, a committee was formed to determine, if possible, who should receive credit for these cultivars. A preliminary report has been issued, and a final report should be complete this summer. Until then, the names that were attached to these cultivars will still be used.

Judy Burns, Judges Records and Classification Chair, reports that we currently have 164 active judges. As the records were just updated, the only updates required for the next two years (per the Judges Handbook) will be for a status change. Please contact Judy with any status updates.

Garden Performance Chair            Judges Records Chair
Randall Goodwin                       Judy Burns

For active judges, the cold months of January and February are a good time to review your Judges Handbook.

Chuck                                                Contact Chuck Zdeb

2013 AHS Convention  Escape to Wisconsin

You are invited to "Escape to Wisconsin" June 13-15. Rest assured, this will not be a cheesy affair. A full schedule is planned with all of the events expected at an AHS convention. There is a link on the homepage of the AHS website at American Hosta Society, or go directly to our website at 2013 AHS Convention.

The cost of this hosta extravaganza is only $139! The venue is the Milwaukee Sheraton Brookfield Hotel, just west of downtown Milwaukee, and we have an enticing rate of $105 per night which includes a hot buffet breakfast. Book your rooms early as there is an automobile race in town that weekend and rooms are sure to be at a premium!

We have 9 beautiful tour gardens to visit. Tours will be by carpool and complete directions and maps will be provided. Attendees who do not have rides will be matched with attendees who do have rides. Hostaphiles are friendly people, and we are confident attendees will be happy to accommodate attendees that need rides.

To whet your appetite, here are a couple of the gardens that will be on the tour.

Bill Radler Garden

The name Bill Radler may be familiar to some gardeners. Bill is the creator of the Knockout Rose. Bill is a rose breeder with an extensive collection of roses of all types. Bill's goal is to develop roses that are showy, disease free, and easy to care for. Thus far, he has developed seven varieties of Knockout Roses. While much of his garden is dedicated to roses and his breeding program, he loves all types of plants.

His 2 acre garden is extensively landscaped with all types of interesting plants. There are many interesting and unusual trees and shrubs, both deciduous and evergreen. He primarily uses perennials, but he also grows many varieties of annuals as well to fill in the garden.

In addition to unusual plants, the garden includes ponds, waterfalls, sculpture, and an extensive stream that meanders through the yard. The sloping garden uses stone to create terraces, raised garden beds, waterfalls, and a very large outdoor fireplace and seating area. There's even an outdoor shower.

This is truly a gardener's garden that you surely will enjoy.

Joy and Dave Collura Garden

Our garden began in 1990 with a raised bed butterfly garden on the sunny front lawn, which broke the suburban bluegrass vista. The backyard had lots of shade. This was fortunate because Hosta virus humanicus had infected Joy in the early '90's. Genus Hosta kept jumping into her cart at garden centers from Milwaukee to Washington, D.C. Dave did the hardscape and Joy placed the hosta, ferns, primula and other companion plants.

Many of the specimen hosta have been in place since 2003. Gardens are always a work in progress with new introductions being added with a recent interest in mini hosta in troughs. The sunny spot in the backyard features a pond with naturalized hardy plants. Dave keeps trying to grow alpine plants and cacti in sometimes too warm/humid low altitude conditions.

Come, sit and enjoy the yard. Watch the birds and the fish. The yard's path is flat and walker/wheelchair accessible.

For more information, contact Tom Micheletti or Jack Barta, co-chairs of the convention.

Contact Tom Micheletti                                    Contact Jack Barta

AHS Membership

The American Hosta Society (AHS) is a society dedicated to the study and improvement of the genus Hosta, and the dissemination of general and scientific knowledge about them. There are many benefits for the members that result from these efforts - both social and in nursery trade. AHS members receive several publications a year including two colorful issues of The Hosta Journal (mailed), four E-Newsletters (emailed), The Online Journal (posted on the AHS website for AHS members only). All of these publications offer articles on cultivation tips, propagation techniques, landscape uses, new cultivars and old species, pioneers and personalities, scientific advances, convention awards and gardens, and news about the AHS.


* An opportunity to attend national meetings and conventions which offer educational and scientific presentations, garden tours, judge's clinics, and a chance to see the latest and best hosta in the hosta show.

* A Biennial AHS Membership Directory

* The priviledge of visiting display gardens throughout the country, many of which are only open to AHS members.

* An invitation to exhibit your favorite hostas and compete for
recognition in various AHS National and Regional hosta shows.

* Developing friendships with people who share an interest in growing hostas.

* Access to the "Member's Only" section of the AHS website.

Another benefit of becoming a new member is that you receive a voucher from the AHS Membership Secretary good for $15.00 towards any purchase at sponsoring nurseries.

To learn more, go to

To join the AHS online, go to, or print the membership application and mail to the Membership Secretary listed.

Please join us today!

Photos courtesy of Terri Meyer,
Edgerton, Wisconsin