Perennials week continues with a Hosta picture. This is probably not the most amazing picture or plant, but a lot of the Hosta varieties we've got are not fully up yet, so this was the most striking of what I had to work with when I was taking the picture.
I like Hostas. They look tropical, but they're not. (WCW, who also has a thing for big-leaved tropicals, feels more or less the same way about Hostas.) And they must be fairly easy to grow, because everybody has them everywhere here. I admit to being a little puzzled by the sheer number of varieties: they only seem to be capable of doing just so many colors, variegations, and sizes. You'd think that everything that could be done with Hostas already had been, but I was talking to Perennial Expert the other day and she said that there are new varieties out that, instead of marginal variegation like 'Grand Prize' here, have irregular stripes of a different color in the leaves. (They're called 'Streakers,' and examples can be seen here.) Which I can see how a Hosta connoisseur might get excited about that.
And anyway, I, who have fourteen different but similar Aglaonemas at home, and fifteen varieties of Anthurium which are only distinguishable from one another when they're blooming, really don't have any room to judge Hosta fans for getting excited about subtle differences between varieties. I know what it's like.