Bev & Dave Stegeman
It was the winter of 1995-1996 when I first heard Olga Petryszyn speak about hostas at a local garden club meeting. I was enthralled with the beautiful sculptural forms and the intense colors in the plants she showed. When she had her annual hosta sale in June I convinced Dave to come with me and we picked out a few of her seedlings for our garden. Dave was awed by the sheer size of her hostas. That year I made my first crosses, but neglected to mark the flowers. I just wanted to have some seeds to grow that winter to see what I would get. The following year we attended our first National Hosta Convention, in Indianapolis. The cut leaf show was the thing that got Dave hooked, and soon we began to meet "hosta people," which is the best part of hostas. I can't remember whether we met Doug or Bob first – both at conventions. At Hosta College we met Brian and Virginia, Stewart, Ron, Kent and Alttara. Monty and Julie followed on Hosta Pix list.
The real hybridizing began in 1997 using some of the big seedlings we had gotten from Olga and some common but beautiful plants like 'Blue Vision', 'Elatior', and 'Potomac Pride'. We acquired our first named streaked plant, 'Swoosh', and began using it. By 2000 we had more streaked breeding plants and discovered RED. We got 'One Man's Treasure' at Hosta College. From that time on, red in the petioles, scapes, and leaves has been a driving force in our hybridizing. We still work with the reds, but continue to be inspired in new directions by the beautiful plants of our FOoSF group members.
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