Hosta in the wild?

Hi! I recently posted an observation of Hosta which I found in a wooded area alongside an urban nature trail. The plant had been recently dumped by a nearby gardener (there were other signs of garden waste nearby) and hadn’t yet taken root. Shouldn’t this observation be considered wild? iNaturalist has automatically flagged it as casual, based on the genus, meaning that I can’t add this observation to certain projects in my area. It seems to me that it’s not cultivated, as it wasn’t planted. Being able to add it to these projects would provide a more complete picture of the local flora (which often includes garden “escapees” such as these).

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If it is an offspring of those plants that were thrown away, it is wild, iNat automatically marks species as cultivated if majority of nearby observations are so, you can overcome its vote with your own.


You can easily counter-vote the iNaturalist algorithm. Just scroll down on the observation page and hit the thumbs up next to “Organism is Wild.” That being said, it’s my opinion that this plant is not wild, because it was placed there by a human, and anyway it’s not rooted and surviving in that spot. If the dumped plant had seeds on it and they grew, that would be a different story, but for now it’s not escaped so much as thrown away.


I would consider it wild, if fact I have several similar Hosta observations.

I’ve found a hosta in the woods before ( but there was no evidence it had been planted intentionally. At which point an organism stops being cultivated and becomes wild is tricky. There’s several threads that discuss this specifically.

If you are sure it was garden trash dumped by a human, then it is not wild.


This plant is present at this time and location due to the direct actions of a human being. To me this is a perfect example of a “not wild” plant. I have a cactus in a little pot on my windowsill. If I got angry at it and pushed it out the open window, it would similarly be “not wild” in any useful sense despite not really being “cultivated” on its new sidewalk temporary home.


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