Hosta ‘Allan P. Mc Connell’


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Hosta ‘Allan P. McConnell’

Brighten the shade

Hosta ‘Allan P. McConnell’ makes the shade sparkle with its’ glistening white edged foliage. It forms a dense, tight mound of heart shaped leaves.
So the summer spires of lavender flowers are a bonus, though the foliage mound is good enough reason to grow it.
It really does sparkle in the shade. 

Where to grow in the garden

‘Allan P. McConnell’ is a small growing Hosta, therefore well suited to smaller gardens and shaded pots. But despite its’ petite size, it is a robust, vigorous grower, and the dense, tight foliage crowds out most garden weeds under trees and shrubs.
Though usually thought of as at home in Shade and Deep Shade, ‘Allan P. McConnell’ is a variety that can tolerate and enjoy a little gentle Dappled Sun or Morning Sun, and Woodland conditions, as the leaves are quite waxy and tough.

Useful companions

They are exceptionally good companions with early bulbs such as miniature daffodils, as they have their timing just right to emerge with their glorious Hosta foliage, and cover up the dirty tea towels that the bulb foliage has become as it dies back.
They look spectacular mass planted, in either single or mixed variety, or as edges in the shade.
Keeping them in raised big tubs in the shade also gives you the opportunity to keep the snails at bay easily, as well as have a spectacular feature.
Both the flower spires and the leaves make lovely cut flowers and vase specimens.  

Surprisingly dry tolerant

Hostas are surprisingly dry tolerant once established.
So despite an incorrect reputation, they are not thirsty plants once they have got their roots down.
Drying out a little between waterings is actually to their taste.
They are reliably frost hardy, enjoy average to fertile soil with compost, and are happiest in a pH range just on either side of neutral.
So not hard to please at all.


Height with flowers: Lavender spires of trumpets to 30cm. approx.
– Width:  A good clump will make a circle of 45cm. diameter approx.
Position: Part Shade to Full Shade, though ‘Allan P. McConnell’ will tolerate gentle Dappled Sun and Morning Sun.
Soil: They enjoy average to fertile soil, and are happiest a pH in a range just on either side of neutral between 5.5 and 7.5. They love humus and organic matter in the soil. Clay soil will need to be opened up with compost for them.
Frost: Very frost hardy to well below minus 10C.
Growth: Herbaceous perennial clump. Deciduous in the winter and giving a colourful autumn foliage colour change.
Fragrance: Not particularly for ‘Allan P. McConnell’, though some Hostas are deliciously fragrant.
Beneficial to wildlife: Bees of all breeds and small honey-eating birds love foraging the trumpet flowers for nectar. Holes bored in the base of the trumpet mean a big bee was too fat to get in.
Beware: Hosta leaf shoots and flowers are prized as delicious food in Japan, and they are not toxic to humans. However they are very toxic to dogs, cats and horses if eaten. Sadly deer follow the Japanese, and eat them with enthusiasm. 
Care: Easy care once established, and protected from slugs and snails.
Deer & Rabbit resistant: Rabbits and deer love eating them. 
Origin: Ground zero for Hostas was the shady forests of China. But even over 2,000 years ago gardeners in China, Japan, and Korea were collecting, trading and breeding them. They had taken European gardeners by storm by the 1830’s, when they began to be traded out of Japan.
History: Hosta breeder Mildred Seaver was known as the “Queen of Hostas”. She devoted herself to breeding Hostas, and was a founder of the New England Hosta Society in U.S.A. which did so much to publicize them in the western world. She introduced Allan P. McConnell in 1980. So although it is an old variety, it is still popular because it is so hardy, vigorous and easy-going. 

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