National Hosta Convention in Green Bay this spring
Nation’s Largest Event of Its Kind Coming to Green Bay
Green Bay, WI — Hundreds of garden enthusiasts from around the country and the world are expected to attend the 51st annual American Hosta Society (AHS) National Convention, being held at the Radisson Hotel & Convention Center June 12–15, 2019.
Founded in 1968, the AHS is a non-profit organization that has grown from a handful of members in its early days to about 3,000 active members today. As the world’s leading association promoting Hosta, their purpose is to foster the development of the genus and its public interest and, of course, share with others the enjoyment that hostas and gardening in general offer.
The first “convention” took place on July 7, 1968 at a society member’s home in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania. Since then, the event has grown to occupy entire convention centers and is held in a different city each year. Past host sites include Indianapolis, St. Louis, Nashville, Washington D.C., Cleveland, Spokane, and many others. Last year’s 50th anniversary event was held in Philadelphia, and the 2020 convention will be in Minneapolis.
“It’s appropriate that the event is coming to Wisconsin this year,” says convention organizer, Tammy Borden. “One of two AHS co-founders, Eunice Fischer, was from Oshkosh and was an early pioneer in hybridizing the genus. Her contributions were so significant that the society has designated annual awards in her honor, the Eunice Fisher Distinguished Merit Award.”
Theme and Activities Highlight Friendship Plant
Hostas are often referred to as the “Friendship Plant” because they can be easily divided and shared with others. Appropriately, the theme for the 2019 event is “Hostaffinity,” emphasizing the relationship and affinity that people have toward hosta and other hosta enthusiasts.
A major part of the convention is participating in area garden tours by motor coach bus. There are 10 private gardens that will be featured over the span of two days, with many displays topping more than 1,000 Hosta varieties.
American Hosta Society National Convention
June 12–15, 2019
Radisson Hotel & Convention Center
Green Bay, WI
- 10 private garden tours
- Large exhibit hall with vendor sales and raffle (Also available to the public)
- Green Bay Botanical Garden Outing with a Wisconsin Spanferkel Pig Roast
- Hosta Show — Hundreds of leaf varieties and design displays
- Seedling Competition — Vote for your favorite new introduction
- Live hosta auction — Bid on mature and rare varieties
- Awards presentation
- And more!
- Speakers, include:
- Rick Goodenough, Hybridizer — Designing Shade Gardens with Hostas
- Don Dean, Hybridizer — The Allure of New & Old Blue Hosta
- Olga Petryszyn, Jeff Miller, Doug Beilstein — Roundtable Discussion
- Shane Wagner, Bruce & Company — Designing with Water Features
- Kathy Baum, Master Gardener — Garden Tips,Tricks & Hacks
Event goers will receive an exclusive convention plant as part of their paid registration named ‘Golden Harmony’ — a Hosta variety introduced by local hybridizers, Herb and Gladys King of Green Bay, for whom the King Shade Garden at the Green Bay Botanical Garden is named. This brand-new Hosta variety has never been offered to the public before.
The AHS national non-profit organization is comprised of dozens of local and regional representative societies across the country. The Green & Gold Hosta Society of Northeastern Wisconsin, which has more than 130 local members, is responsible for organizing and hosting the 2019 national event.
Registration information and additional details can be found on the event website at www.ahs2019event.org.