Volunteers

Volunteers are what my grandpa used to call plants that just show up, unplanned and unplanted, like tomato plants in the compost pile, or a seedling maple right where you wanted a mature tree someday.  One of the fun things about a new house is the unexpected plants that pop up.  I’ve not had a spring here in my new house, but I’ve been finding bulbs as I dig and I can only imagine.

This, though, was a pleasant surprise.  It is some variety of Hosta, all of which grow really well in the shade, but these get a heavy dose of morning sun.  There is a huge bank of them, and they are fragrant, which I didn’t know Hosta could be.  Sort of a spicy smell.  The plants have to be at least ten years old, maybe twenty, and they are gorgeous.  Not really volunteers because someone planted them.  But not me, and it was a beautiful surprise.  They are going to be flowering for at least three more weeks.  Heavenly!

30 Comments

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30 responses to “Volunteers

  1. Alison

    Gorgeous and fortunate that you get to reap the benefits of their beauty.

  2. Sounds like quite a nice surprise for your house =) That’s the one in SC right?

  3. JanisHarrison

    What a lovely surprise! Fragrant hostas! Never knew there was such a critter. I had a couple of hostas at one time, we called ’em slug magnets. Never knew we had so many dern slugs in our yard. With some TLC the plants lasted a couple of years, then just never came up again. I may try some again if I find myself in the appropriate situation — don’t think an apt with a full southern exposure is quite right…

  4. Sue, Chicago

    Hey Kim! I remember when my sister moved into her old house. She had bought it from an older couple. The first spring there, the entire back yard, not just the flower beds, were awash in tulips and daffodils. It was funny watching her dogs trying to walk through them. They reminded me of the Tiny Tim song. She decided to let them go, but she went through the yard with different colored yarn lengths and “labeled” each bloom by color. After they had finished blooming, she dug up all the bulbs and was able to sort the bulbs by the yarn and then she replanted them in her flower beds. After that first spring, they were then confined to a more classic display!

  5. Krista

    Yes, that is Plantaginea. I have over 200 different cultivars of Hosta in my gardens, but this is definitely my favorite–the most fragrant of all the ‘fragrant hostas’–and there aren’t many on that list to begin with!! They are often incorrectly given the name “August Lily”–they are no member of the lily family at all.
    I took my pic on Saturday morning:

  6. Judy B

    WATCH OUT for the deer!
    Those buggers LOVE Hostas!
    Right now I have a lovely bunch of stems in my flower beds, they came through and ate all the leaves!

    • -grin- I’m sorry, Judy. I shouldn’t laugh, but that is so bold of them! We have deer in the area, but it’s a busy street, so they likely won’t come down. Likely.

  7. Hello there Ms. Harrison,
    I almost didn’t come and look, lol, I’ve been thinking that it’s Sunday all day. Had a long weekend here.🙂
    Hope you had as good a weekend as I did. We had a Pumpkin Volunteer in our compost heap once, that was pretty cool.
    Beautiful flowers, hope they bring you a lot of joy!

    Alyss

  8. Chelikins

    Lovely picture. I love to look at flowers.. wish I could grow them.. lol! Thanks for sharing your surprise!

  9. mudepoz

    Funkia is the old species name. Maybe since I was a preteen? It’s a wonderful, hardy hosta, and I think Aphrodite, one of my other favorites (double white) is derived from it.
    (I think I have about 40 cultivars of Hosta, and my boss has a huge collection.
    So obviously, deer aren’t as big an issue at your new home as your old🙂

  10. Marsha

    I love Hostas, they come is some very beautiful shades of green. I have never seen one with a flower like the one in your picture. It really is gorgeous. It must be a variety that doesn’t tolerate the heat as well as our sturdy group down here. I have no doubt you will find the perfect spot in the yard to show it off.

    • I’ve got another variety that has deep, almost silvery leaves. I’m not sure if I should move these guys or not. They are doing so well were they are.

  11. suzannelazear

    We have volunteers, too, in the form of mint plants that have sprung up along the side of the house, the tot replanted them in her garden.

    Happy monday.

    ~Suzi

  12. Jenn

    I know exactly what you mean! We just moved into our new place in February & had some really interesting placed tulips…in rows right in the middle of my yard. So, we dug them up & moved them over to the garden. “Volunteers”, that’s great!

  13. Chrisy

    Damn I always comment while you’re answering. >.<

  14. Tiffany

    You make the usage of “volunteers” seem like an archaic, a couple of ‘generations removed’ term. My mom and dad use that term readily, and in turn, so do i (age 28). LOL. Maybe it’s of a western PA usage, like the “berm” of the road (which came about through Ohio, Pa, Indiana because of the canal systems.) I luv knowing localized dialect, useless as it it😉

  15. Vampyre

    Howdy ma’am,

    You are having quite the adventure at your new house. It sounds like you are really enjoying yourself. 🙂

    V^^^^V