After years of keeping students separated by gender, many sports, even on the varsity level, are finally going co-ed. One Florida high school made history when they decided to add a female quarterback to their roster. The teen, 16-year-old Holly Neher, is only the second girl in the team’s half-century history to make the varsity team. The other night, she became the first to ever complete a touchdown pass. It’s possible that Neher is the first female varsity quarterback in the state to accomplish this feat of athleticism.
The touchdown occurred in the game’s final quarter, while Holly’s team was down significantly. With a silent prayer, Holly threw the 42-yard pass, and the rest was history. “I started jumping up and down. My teammates started jumping on me,” Holly shared with ABC News about the moments that followed. “Coaches were screaming from the sidelines. Everyone started hitting me on the helmet.”
Holly was playing in her very first varsity game, after having played on the girls’ flag football team for several years. The high school junior wanted to continue to play, so she decided to try out for the varsity team, despite being 5’2″ and female.
The coach for Hollywood Hills Varsity Football, Brandon Graham, explained his choice to ABC, saying, “Whether it’s a female or male quarterback or a ninth or twelfth grader, you want someone who isn’t afraid to make a mistake and who knows they’re going to get yelled at from time to time. There is something about her that is so inspiring for her teammates. They want to follow her.”
Assistant principal for the high school, Erin Brown, shared, “When she made that pass the whole crowd went wild and you could see the support from her teammates. We couldn’t be more proud of our students.”
45 Clever Gardeners Share How They Make Their Hostas Thrive
Want to see your garden adorned with tints of white and mauve? The East Asian plants, hostas, can be the perfect addition to your low maintenance garden. Hostas are best known for symbolizing devotion. It’s quite easy to manage hostas, but in case you are new to the world of gardening and would like to start with hostas, here are some handy tips!
Move the Plant If it Gets Messy
Hostas grow faster than diseases! If you want your garden to have the best hostas, move some of them to different spots without damaging the stems. All you need is a pitchfork, shovel, and mask tape.
Whenever you notice an untidy growth of your hostas, dig around the plant, wrap your hosta tightly with masking tape or a belt, loosen the hosta from its base from all directions, take out the plant, place it in the new hole, and fill it back. Remember to fertilize and water your hosta regularly.
Propagate Hosta With a Shovel
Did you know that you can propagate hosta plants with just a shovel? Here’s what you need to do: find the hosta that you want to propagate, find the eye of the hosta (this can be a bit difficult) and separate the eye from the soil with a shovel.
Then get some roots along with the eyes, plant the eye in a new pod, and lastly take care of the eye until you find a new home.
Place Hostas in Shade
First of all, each plant has its own needs. It’s really easy to grow hostas, but these plants have their own limitations, one of them being exposure to excessive sunlight. Hostas cannot handle direct sun rays. The leaves burn, the soil dries out, and your hosta falls victim to damage or decay.
So, if you place your hosta in the shade instead, you won’t be looking at an early decay. Essentially, make sure that the bright rays of the scorching noon sun don’t reach your hosta.
Dealing With Nibbling Critters
While taking a walk in the garden in the spring, did you notice holes in your hosta leaves? What this means is that some nibbling critters got to your plants and will keep ruining them until you get rid of them! Many people say that adding eggshells prevents critters from attacking the plants, but they don’t always work.
The best way to fight these critters is to squish them. The best time to find these nibbling critters is at night. Grab a torch and begin squishing.
Fall Duty for Hostas
As a gardener, you should never skip your fall duties! As discussed before, if you fail to clean up your flowerbed in the fall, you can bid adieu to the beautiful hosta plants in your garden.
Cleaning up the hostas and removing the dead foliages is therefore a must! Try not to use tools such as pruners while cleaning your hostas, though. Some gardeners believe that pruners may lead to the spread of plant diseases.
Divide the Hosta Cones
If you see a hosta cone popping out, it’s a great idea to propagate it. All you need to do is divide the cones. The best time to do so is in early spring. Doing it in a later period may damage the foliage.
You surely don’t want that for your hostas. Find a nice clump after digging up your hosta. Cut the clump into three equal cones. The cones should be tight. Use a tight shovel for this purpose.
Revive Dying Hostas
Before you start crying over that dying hosta in your garden, there is something gardeners would like to let you know: they can be revived! It’s common for the hosta roots to be eaten. If you happen to notice scratches of undestroyed roots, that’s your cue.
Find a vase or jar and place it there. The roots should be two inches above the water. After five to six weeks, it will be ready for replanting! Make sure the damaged hosta gets a lot of sunlight.
Select the Right One for Your Garden
Your garden says a lot about you. Whether you have a vibrant or a serious personality, let your hosta speak for you! You will be amazed at the variety of hostas that you can grow. It becomes difficult to choose a certain type.
There are curly hostas, miniature ones, ones with tapered leaves, hosta with different flower colors, curvy hostas, and whatnot! Besides, you can choose the hosta on the basis of the light reaching your garden. Above all, choose the type that will be easier for you to maintain.
Hostas That Must Be Moved and Divided
Since most hosta plants are small and of the same kind, it might be a bit hard to remember which hosta you actually need to move and divide during spring. If you could distinguish them, kudos to you! In the case of others, what you can do is stick a reminder to the ground after you’ve identified the hosta.
The upper portion may get destroyed, but nothing is going to change under the soil. When the time comes, dig in to find your targeted hosta.
Save Your Hosta From Deer
Although deer are one of the most beautiful creatures on the planet, they can be an arch-enemy to your hostas! However, they can be repelled with the help of scents. Most of the gardeners these days are using Irish Spring soap as a deterrent.
Shred the soap using a food processor and spread it around your garden quite liberally. The smell will surely prevent the lovely herbivores from feasting on your hostas. However, remember to spread it again after two to three weeks, especially after heavy rain.
Add Eggshells to the Soil
Slimy slugs are like a plague to your hosta plants. They just can’t stop munching on the hosta leaves. Nobody really likes to see leaves with holes on their garden plants. Unless that is your aesthetic, don’t let slugs be the king of your garden.
Fight them and protect your hostas! Opt for organic gardening. Crush eggshells or coffee grounds and spread them in the soil. That should keep the slugs at bay.
Begin Gardening With a Hosta
It’s never too late to start gardening. You might be one of the busy bees who don’t have much time for gardening. In that case, most gardeners recommend creating a hosta garden. These plants are small, easy to maintain, grow a lot, and make your garden look beautiful.
The only thing you need to watch out for is animals and insects feasting on the plants. Otherwise, it’s a very good option to start gardening based on their patterns, fragrance, affinity to light, and so on.
Plant Them Anywhere
Gardeners these days don’t believe that hostas should be bound to ground only! They are quite liberal with their choices and will utilize every scrap to plant hostas. Besides, hostas are easy to plant and nurture, so it can be planted anywhere!
Next time you see an empty spot in your garden or in your yard, grab a pot to plant a hosta. Match it with other plants. Hostas grow quite quickly, though. So, don’t forget to divide them.
Make Adorable Markers for Hostas
Here’s a small tip from creative gardeners: besides nurturing the plants in your garden, you should also try to beautify them!
Maybe, mark them with different colorful papers with designs. In this way, your garden will look much more organized, and people will get to know about the plants you have. Your markers will also distinguish the different types of hostas in case you have a huge variety of plants in the garden.
Strip Down Hostas Before Winter
Hostas don’t require much attention like other plants do, but there is one thing that you absolutely need to do to take care of them: remove the dead foliage before winter! Removing dead plants at the time of fall causes snails and slugs to move elsewhere.
Besides, nematodes can stick to the dead leaves during winter and attack your plants afterward. So, the best thing you can do to prevent that is to find the dead foliage and pull them out of the plants.
Store Hostas in a Cabinet
Hosta plants are typically small, vulnerable plants. Of course, you should try to put in maximum care. You don’t want animals feasting on your plants or babies toying around with the leaves. For this reason, most gardeners suggest that you get cabinets!
You can build a multi-storeyed cabinet and place a lot of hostas. As hostas don’t require much light, placing them in the cabinet will surely protect them without any issue.
Greenhouse to Insulate Warmth
The growth of hosta plants depends on a number of factors, two of them being humidity and warmth. This is why some gardeners suggest growing them greenhouses. If you don’t have access to a greenhouse but want the best for your hosta plants, you can try and build a DIY greenhouse!
Collect some logs and build a frame. Next, put the roof panels on. Staple the whole structure with poly, and there you have it!
Deer Juice to the Rescue
Even if you use soap fragrances to drive deer away, if they are hungry enough, they will end up eating the plants anyway. With a little deer juice, you can prevent that from happening. To concoct some deer juice, you’ll need to blend scallions and garlic.
Put together fels-naptha soap, chilli powder, cayenne pepper and eggs in a cheese cloth along with the blended mixture and tie it up. Then put the package in five gallons of hot water. The smell should be strong enough to repel deer.
Yes, the adorable rabbits may turn out to be pesky to your hostas. The solution here is used coffee grounds! Coffee grounds are known to provide a number of benefits in gardens. For one, the fragrance of coffee can deter deer and rabbits both.
All you have to do is spread some coffee grounds in the soil around the hostas and mix them well. Rabbits will surely never come close to munch on your hostas again!
Handmade Potting Soil
Having to buy your soil mixtures again and again may seem like an expensive process. You can simply give your hostas the best nutrients by making your own potting soil. Grab peat, perlite, compost, and fertilizer. They are available everywhere and will save you a lot of money!
Your mixture should contain about 60% compost, 30% peat, 10% perlite, and fertilizer according to your needs. In this process, you can break down any large chunks of compost that do not mix with soil easily.
Reuse Bottles to Make Watering Cans
Remembering to water your plants is important if you have a garden. The problem is, what do you do when you are out for a while? Well, you can use a cool hack with bottles to keep your plants hydrated.
Yes, plastic bottles! With a bottle, a few metal adapters, black electrical tape, some measuring tape, and scissors, you can easily create a contraption that will keep your plants watered and healthy.
Put Hostas in Pretty Broken Cups
You use broken plates and cups as planters! You do not need to throw away the broken cups anymore. Collect a few of those broken plates and glue them to a wall or board to convert them into artsy plant holders. It looks as pretty as you would imagine.
Get a base to glue the broken cups and plates. You will need to weatherproof the board to make sure it isn’t damaged by the atmosphere, though. Glue the cups on the base, and voila! You have yourself a plant holder.
Use Compost as Hosta Fertilizer
You should use compost as fertilizer for hostas. Get a trash can with a lid. Punch air holes on the bottom and the sides of the can. Space them about 18 inches or so.
Put browns and greens in the can (two portions of greens for each portion of brown), fill it up to three quarters, and add water after each layer. Toss the can once a week to ensure proper mixing and add water as needed. You should have your compost ready in four to six weeks.
Clean the Leaves
Let’s face it, clean and shiny leaves look gorgeous. You can use dairy milk with water to give the leaves of your hosta plants a shine. Here is how to do it: Mix 40% dairy milk and 60% water, spray it onto the leaves, and give it a rub.
The shine should be instantly apparent. Once every week or so, you can use an Epsom salt spray too. Mix one tablespoon of Epsom salt with two cups of water and spray on the leaves.
Plant Hostas in Trash Cans
Many gardeners are restricted by space when growing hostas. If you have never grown hostas or are unfamiliar with them, you should know that they can grow pretty big given enough time. Here is a cool trick – trash cans for hosta holders.
Take a trash can and drill a hole at the bottom to act as drainage. Put some plastic bottles at the bottom and the potting soil. It makes for the perfect place for hostas.
You will need to bring some plants indoors during fall or winter. Caring for them can be tricky if you are not too experienced. The trick is, plenty of warmth and appropriate levels of water should do the trick.
Face the plants to the windows to ensure maximum light. Make sure to water them properly too. Bringing in plants and taking care of them indoors will not be much of a hassle then.
Plant Them Anytime
Hostas are some of the easiest plants to work with. They are not affected by the season much and can be planted almost at any time. If you provide them with enough moisture, you can buy, pot, and plant hostas all through the spring to fall.
You can either choose to buy them from nurseries or even trade them from a friend. Another great thing about hostas is that they can be moved without much worry as well.
Know Where to Plant Certain Hostas
Some hostas need to be planted at certain places depending on the variety. Before you buy them, make sure you are buying the right variety. Some hostas need a lot of shade to grow properly. On the other hand, some hosta varieties require sunlight.
For these, it is best to plant them where sunlight is the most abundant. However, avoid the hot afternoon sun, you can prop up a makeshift temporary shade.
Organic Material in Soil
The best soils for hostas are slightly acidic. A pH level of 6.5 to 7.5 is ideal. Organic matter such as compost, humus, or sand is a pretty good way to go in this case. Make sure there is enough drainage as well. Apart from that, moist soil is preferred too.
An inch of water per week is the sweet spot you would want to target. For root development, air circulation and deep watering is very important.
Give Hostas Proper Spacing
Planned spacing is crucial when planting hostas too. You want to give your plants enough space for them to grow naturally underground. That is why, when planting, plan out the spacing beforehand. Some need shorter space to avoid weed growth.
The best way to know how much spacing you should have for the plants is to consult before you buy. This will ensure that you know exactly what plant variety you are buying and can avoid any surprises down the line.
Tease the Roots
When planting hostas out of containers into the ground, there are a couple of things to keep in mind to ensure the best results. Teasing the roots will help them to spread out better into the soil.
This, as you may imagine, creates a good base for the hosta plant. Having a bit of loose soil also helps in this case. Make sure to tease the roots gently before planting, though.
Stimulate Root Growth
Sometimes, plants need a little help for the root to grow. Adding a bit of fertilizer will do wonders. Remember the hack of creating fertilizer from compost? You can use similar fertilizers to stimulate the roots and promote rapid growth.
Also, make sure that the root clumps are at the ground level to ensure that it gets the right nutrients it needs. Root growth is essential for plants to be healthy. This hack is sure to help your garden go a long way.
Anyone who has some gardening experience has had at least one very troubling problem to deal with. That is weed. Weed growth can be a big inconvenience for all gardeners. However, there is something you can do about it.
To reduce weed growth, you can use mulch. If you are using cocoa or pine mulch, you can even keep slugs away. Try to avoid shredded leaves when using mulch, though. They can attract slugs instead.
Keep the Soil Moist
Hosta plants, in particular, require moist soil. This ensures that they can grow optimally. If the soil moisture is too little, that can cause the plants to decay – something we are sure none of the gardeners want.
During the growth season for these plants, moist soil will ensure proper growth. So, try to keep the soil properly moist at least until the plants adapt to the soil mixture fully.
Sunny Hostas Need More Water
So far, it must be pretty clear that hostas like water and moist soil. Different varieties of hostas do well with varying water levels, though. For example, sunny hostas require quite a lot more water compared to some other varieties.
During their growth period, ensure that they get enough water, and they will be able to grow rapidly during this time. Once they are grown, though, you can cut down on the watering and put it in a dry shade.
Fertilizer Isn’t Always the Solution
Many novice gardeners make the mistake of using fertilization during the fall for hostas. That is never really recommended. Hostas are somewhat low maintenance plants. Having said that, proper maintenance during the fall is important.
Proper care during the fall period will help the plant grow during the spring. This is good news for you during the fall. So, you should not use fertilizer during the fall. Once springs start rolling in, start with a balanced fertilizer mixture.
Treat Plant Diseases
Hostas, if not taken proper care of, can be infected by Virus X. This virus was identified in 1996 and is commonly found in most gardens. Luckily, there are some telltale signs of these infections.
The most common signs of virus x infections are blue or green spots, deformed leaves, lumpy leaves, or dark-colored hostas, in general. Whenever you spot a plant affected by Virus X, the best and only way to save your garden is to get rid of them.
Bare Rooted Plants Need Extra Care
If you get yourself a bare-rooted plant, these must be planted immediately. Typically, these plants will come in a bag and some kind of wet wrapping around the roots. In most cases, newspapers are used. Make sure to plant it before the roots dry out.
Take it out of the bag and dig a hole twice as wide as the plant itself. The depth of the hole should be as deep as the root system. You can use soil mixture to create a mound and spread the root system over it.
Know How to Water Hostas
Watering plants is not just pouring water around the general area of the plant or pot and calling it a day. You need to water the hosta plant close to the crown. You can use a watering can to water close to the roots so that the overheads do not stop the water from reaching the roots.
You can also use a hose. However, make sure to double-check the water pressure. You do not want the water pressure to be too much – it may damage the plant.
Learn How Big Hostas Grow
Hostas can grow very big and very fast. Many people may get hostas because they are fairly easy to take care of but get completely overwhelmed because of how huge they can grow. A typical full growth cycle can take up to six months.
Make sure to research how big they grow, so you can prepare a space for the plant beforehand. Here is another bonus tip: the number of flowers produced every year is an indicator of the growth rate.
Arrange a Proper Drainage Path
Unless you can arrange proper drainage, there’s really not much chance for your hosta to last for a long time. So, gardeners around the world suggest planter boxes for ensuring proper drainage.
If planter boxes seem way out of your budget, you can try to make a DIY one for your garden. We recommend wooden boxes. Make sure that you don’t fill the boxes with a lot of soil. Drill holes at the bottom to regulate the water flow and drainage.
Care in Winter
Hostas are pretty resilient plants. This is one of the reasons why so many people decide to grow them. There is a certain thing you can do to increase the chance of survival. Start by cleaning off dead leaves. By cleaning off, we mean to destroy them.
If your plan is infected by Virus X, you most definitely need to get rid of the infected leaves. Clean up the dead leaves when hostas are dormant. These leaves can attract slugs, which are bad for the living plant.
Get Creative with Varieties
The greatest joy of planting hostas is the sheer variety available. You can choose from different types of leaf colors, shapes, and even textures. Try to experiment around with the different varieties of hostas available to you.
You can spruce up a garden by getting the just the right type of hostas that works for you. You can pick from colors like chartreuse and dusky blue or shapes like round or even heart-shaped.
Plant Edible Hostas
It seems like hostas just keep on giving. Did you know that baby hosta leaves are edible? Young hosta leaves are commonly eaten in Japan. They are called urui, and the popular ways of preparing it include boiling, eating completely raw, or frying in tempura.
Young hosta leaves have been eaten safely for centuries and are delicious. If you are wondering how the taste might be, they are known to be very similar to asparagus. As you would imagine, they can be used in salads too.
Fight Slugs With Copper Mesh
It turns out, hosta leaves are a slug’s favorite meal. At any time of the year, you will definitely see some shredded hosta leaves all around your plants. These become food for slugs! Gardeners around the world would like to let you know that there’s a solution – and it’s an eco-friendly one at that.
Dig a trench around the hosta plant and place a copper mesh. The hosta will keep growing around it with no chance of slug attacks.