Hosta 'First Blush'

Registered by Bob Solberg of Green Hill Farm in North Carolina in 2016, this cultivar is a hybrid of an unnamed seedling × H. 'Beet Salad'. It is a medium size hosta with a height of about 14 inches and a spread of 28 inches. The foliage is narrowly ovate, slightly wavy and has smooth texture with thin substance. The red flower scapes bear rich purple flowers from mid-July into August.

The registration materials state: "Emerges with blood red petioles and red margins. First leaves "blush" red when the second flush of leaves appear."

In his presentation at the 2019 Dixie Regional Hosta Meeting in Delaware, Bob stated that 'Red Blush' maintains its red coloration in the leaf much longer into the season in the Pacific Northwest or Canada with their long, cool summers. In hotter places such as North Carolina, the red begins to fade by Memorial Day. His theory is that the red pigment (anthocyanin) is attached to a sugar molecule in the leaf. When the weather gets hot, the sugar is used by the plant and the pigment molecules are lost too.



United States Patent: PP28920 

Abstract: A new and distinct cultivar of Hosta named ‘First Blush’, characterized by its medium sized mounding clump, green leaves with purplish-red colored petioles on both sides, that emerge with a thin purplish-red margin, become (“blush”) purplish-red on the upward side of the leaf blade in the space between the veins, and producing dark purple pink flowers on purplish-red scapes. In combination these traits set ‘First Blush’ apart from all other existing varieties of Hosta known to the inventor.

 
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