You know when you type a topic into the Google search bar and it offers you questions, presumably from a list of common questions asked by others?
What part of the hosta is poisonous?
Oh, that’s not a good start. But it ends worse.
The entire plant, including the Hosta flowers, leaves, stems, and bulbs will make your dog sick and can be fatal in rare cases.
All right, then. What part? All parts.
And not just dogs get sick, although that would be bad enough: Hostas are toxic to cats and horses. Slugs and deer, on the other hand, can chow down on hostas with impunity. Sluggish adult humans can also eat them; children, as dear as they may be, should nevertheless refrain.
But my question was not, or had not been, about the toxicity of hostas. Instead, I was wondering whether they were hardy in Alberta. I’d never grown hostas until I moved to Ontario. Was it the plant or just me?
Just me, as this Edmonton-area greenhouse blog makes clear.
They’re one of Canada’s favourite perennials for 3 good reasons:
they’re low maintenance, totally rock in the shade,
and have more elegance in one leaf than most perennials have in their whole plant. – Salisbury Greenhouse (St. Albert and Sherwood Park, AB)
What made me think of hostas this week? The afternoon sun intermittently lighting up the shade under my put-upon magnolia tree and slanting across the elegant leaves of not one but two toxic and yet low-maintenance hosta plants. Hey, nobody’s perfect.
Green ribs curve inward
Look, but don’t nibble.