Hosta 'Blue Mouse Ears'
 

Originated by Emile and Jane Deckert of Maryland, this cultivar was the American Hosta Growers Association 2008 "Hosta of the Year" and was winner of the Benedict Garden Performance Medal for 2011.

A slow growing, small size (8 inches high by 19 inches wide) hosta, it is a tissue culture sport of H. 'Blue Cadet' that was registered in the year 2000. The leaves begin the year blue-green and then change to dark green as the summer progresses. They are slightly cupped and nearly round in shape. In July, it bears clusters of pale purple flowers but is sterile so does not produce seeds.

According to The Hostapedia by Mark Zilis (2009), "The name of this cultivar wins my award for "Best Hosta Name", conjuring up the idea of tiny, cupped, blue leaves."

From the Field Guide to Hostas by Mark Zilis (2014), "...initiated the mini-hosta craze that continues to this day."

The Book of Little Hostas by Kathy and Michael Shadrack (2010) says: "The flower buds are attractively balloon-like. This tough blue will look good in a container or trough."

The New Encyclopedia of Hostas by Diana Grenfell (2009) states: "An excellent specimen for a rock garden, gravel bed, or a container...Has recently spawned a number of exciting sports...Racemes are striking especially when in bud. Buds are held horizontally and swell up like mini-balloons before partially opening."

An article by Warren I. Pollock in The Hosta Journal  (2014 Vol. 45 No. 1) states that, "I'm in agreement with what Bob Solberg...expressed at the 2013 Winter Scientific Meeting in the Chicago area: "'Sum and Substance' is the second best name ever for a hosta. Only H. 'Blue Mouse Ears' is better - but just slightly."

'Blue Mouse Ears' has has been Number 1 many times on the annual Mini Hosta Popularity Poll by members of The American Hosta Society.

In his presentation at the 2019 Dixie Regional Hosta Meeting in Delaware, Bob stated that Warren Pollock had said that this is "the most unusual genetic hosta." When it "reverts", 'Blue Mouse Ears' does not seem to go back to its 'Blue Cadet' heritage which is very unusual. Mr PGC wonders if this might be a case where rather than one or two traits changing as in most sports, a large number of recessive traits in 'Blue Cadet' suddenly expressed themselves in this plant we call 'Blue Mouse Ears' making it so unique...just a guess.

This hosta has been the mother plant for many new hostas. Through 2017, there have been around 24 named sports (see below) of 'Blue Mouse Ears' introduced. Also another 28 cultivars have been sported from those hostas.


       

The Hosta Journal (2012 Vol. 43 No 2) in an article by Warren I. Pollock (pg. 16) listed the following:

Mouse Ears Series of Hostas

Plain Colored Leaves
Blue-Green Center, Creamy Yellow or White Margin
Blue-Green Center, White Margin
Creamy Yellow or White Center, Blue-Green Margin
White Center All Season, Blue-Green Margin
Streaked Leaves
Unusual Variegation

 
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