Throughout history, many people have made lasting contributions to the world of hostas. In these pages, we hope to pay tribute to some of them. Our concentration will be primarily on those who have introduced or registered new cultivars, found new species, promoted the genus or added to our knowledge about this, the Number One selling herbaceous perennial plant in the U.S.

We are always looking to expand these listings and to keep them up to date. So, if you have new information or know of someone who you think should be included, please send us their name and a brief description of their contributions to the World of Hostas. Thanks.

C.H. , an ornamental horticulture graduate of the University of Illinois, is an avid gardener and long term employee of Walters Gardens, Inc. in Zeeland, Michigan. Walters is one of the world's largest producers and wholesalers of herbaceous perennials and a leader in tissue culture production of hostas.

He has been very active in The American Hosta Society and served as president from 2001 to 2003. In 2006, C.H. was given the Alex J. Summers Distinguished Merit Award by the AHS. He has also served as the AHS Scientific Chair.

C.H. has registered over 50 hosta cultivars on behalf of himself and Walters Gardens including H. 'Regal Splendor' the 2003 "Hosta of the Year" and H. 'Northern Exposure'.

Eunice, who lived in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, was one of the earliest and most dedicated hosta enthusiasts in the United States. She was the first Secretary-Treasurer of The American Hosta Society when it was formed in 1968.

According to Zilis (2000) in the 1970s, she authored and self-published three editions of the first book on hostas titled Hosta: The Aristocratic Plant for Shady Gardens.

The Olbrich Botanical Gardens in Madison, Wisconsin has developed the Eunice V. Fisher Hosta Garden in her honor. The AHS Eunice Fisher Award is named in her honor.

She introduced over 40 cultivars of hosta including H. 'Candy Hearts'H. 'Green Platter' and H. 'Misty Waters'.

Cultivars named in her honor include H. 'Fisher's Cream Edge' and H. 'Eunice Fisher' from Peter Ruh.

After studying at the Edinburgh Botanic Garden, and at the Royal Horticultural Society gardens at Chiswick, Fortune was sent to China to find new plants by the RHS in 1843. He was the first collector in China to have relative freedom and he introduced many essential garden plants to the Western world. Fortune was also briefly the curator of the Chelsea Physic Garden in London.

His trees included the false larch (Pseudolarix), the Chinese plum yew (Cephalotaxus fortunei), the umbrella pine (Sciadopitys verticillata) and the Cryptomeria. In 1848 he returned to China and sent seeds and plants of the tea tree to India, thereby becoming the foundation for the India Tea industry.

Fortune is credited with introducing certain hostas into England and Europe. Until W. George Schmid's book in 1991, those plants were thought to be a species and were named Hosta fortunei. Schmid determined that the plants were not from a naturally occurring species and were actually cultivars created in either Asia or after introduction to Europe. So, they have been "demoted" to cultivar status and are now know by the name Hosta 'Fortunei'.

Other garden plants introduced by him include: Forsythia viridissima, Jasminium nudiflorum, Anemone japonica, Dielytra spectabilis, Kerria japonica Euonymus fortunei, Viburnum plicatum, Trachycarpus fortunei,  Cephalotaxus fortunei, Hosta 'Fortunei', Rhododendron fortunei, Mahonia fortunei, Pleioblastus fortunei.

Hybridizer from Kings Park, New York who introduced cultivars including H. montana 'Emma Foster' and H. 'Hidden Cove'.

 

Cultivars named for him include H. 'Gene Foster' from Eugene Foster.

Marco's father was a nurseryman who grew cut flowers for sale at the Aalsmeer Flower Auction. The family nursery is located in Ter Aar, the Netherlands.

In the early 1990's, Marco began hybridizing and selecting hostas. Many of his plants are part of the "Paradise" series named after Paradise Road which is the address of the nursery.

He has introduced several hostas including H. 'Forbidden Fruit', H. 'Paradise Island' and H. 'Stand By Me'.

In 1817, a man named Kurt Sprengel named the recently identified genus of foliage plants, Funkia. This was to honor H. C. Funck who was a German (Prussian) botanist of some renown.

Somewhere along the line, it was determined that the plant had earlier been named...Hosta for a man named Host and that name, fortunately in my opinion, has taken precedence.

Note: Just think, instead of Hostaphiles, these people could be called Funkiadelics...remember them from the 1970s?

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