Thanks to Cathy Brown for sharing her father's inspirational story!

"Barney Spearman is an 80-year-old hosta enthusiast in Dayton, Ohio, and his backyard hosta garden is spectacular. Barney has about 40 different species of hostas, and probably about 200 total plants, artfully arranged around stone pathways (he personally collected and installed the stepping stones as they were excavated from nearby construction sites.)

Barney likes to feature several of the ”Hosta of the Year” as selected by the American Hosta Society. He appreciates that these plants are resilient, easy to grow, and easy to maintain, and he suggests that gardeners should use these as a guide for planting. While Barney started several of the plants from fellow hosta gardners, he has also purchased many others from local nurseries. His favorites include: June, Stained Glass, Segae, and Paul’s Glory.

Barney’s magnificent garden has grown and flourished, because, once established, hostas can be split into 3-4 new plants every season.  He says, “I have tags to ID each specie in the garden. I merely cut a cross section of a hard wood and used a rigid wire to place the painted ID next to the plant.” Annuals are blended in hypertufa pots which Barney hand makes from peat moss, portland cement, and pearlite. The plants he likes to include are begonias, astilbes, impatients, and ferns. He selects the plants based their ability to grow in the shade."


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