A study was conducted to determine the effects of benzyladenine (BA) on improving summer quality of hosta in container production and in the landscape. For container production, stock plants of Hosta ‘Sum and Substance’, H. sieboldiana ‘Elegans’, H. ‘Francee’, H. sieboldiana ‘Frances Williams’, H. plantaginea, and H. ‘Tokudama’ were divided and potted. When they showed signs of summer dormancy or foliar decline, half the plants of each cultivar/species received a single foliar spray application of 3000 ppm BA. In the landscape, half the established field-planted hosta with 27–4 initial offsets (‘Francee’) or 0–3 initial offsets (‘Frances Williams’) received a single foliar spray application of 3000 ppm BA when plants began to show signs of summer dormancy. BA stimulated the outgrowth of axillary and rhizomic buds in all cultivars/species in both parts of the study. Offsets formed more leaves on plants treated with BA compared to the untreated hosta. Offset leaf number was dependent on cultivar in both locations, and initial offset number affected leaf number for ‘Frances Williams’ in the landscape. Generally, BA application improved plant appearance of cultivars/species in both parts of the study. Cultivar/species and BA influenced whole plant growth index in container production, but had no effect in the landscape.
5Professor, Department of Botany-Microbiology.