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HOSTA plantaginea

Image of Hosta plantaginea

Gerald L. Klingaman

Family

Liliaceae

Botanical Name

HOSTA plantaginea

Plant Common Name

August Lily, Hosta, Plantain Lily

General Description

Grown for its bold, lush, sun-tolerant foliage and fragrant late-season flowers, this large herbaceous perennial was introduced to Western gardens around 1784. It is native to forests and slopes of eastern and central China.

August lily's oval to heart-shaped, long-stalked, glossy bright-green leaves arise in spring from thick, fleshy-rooted rhizomes. The leaves are thin-textured and are creased with deep, curving, longitudinal veins. In late summer and early fall, clusters of sweetly scented, white, funnel-shaped flowers appear on tall stout scapes. The flowers are followed by large, cylindrical, three-sided seed capsules that mature from green to tan. Plants spread gradually to form large clumps.

This tough, long-lived perennial thrives in partial to full sun and fertile, well-drained, humus-rich soil. Use it as a specimen by a patio or path, or in groups in a mixed border or naturalistic planting. It is an ancestor of numerous fragrant-flowered hybrids including 'Honeybells' and 'Royal Standard'.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    9 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    3 - 9

  • Sunset Zone

    1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Perennial

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun, Partial Shade

  • Width

    3'-4' / 0.9m - 1.2m

  • Bloom Time

    Late Summer, Early Fall

  • Native To

    China

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Average

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water

  • Habit

    Clump-Forming

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    White

  • Fruit Color

    Green, Tan

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Light Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Light Green, Slate Gray, Steel Blue

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Light Green, Light Yellow, Yellow Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Bold

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Container, Feature Plant, Foundation, Groundcover, Mixed Border

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Hummingbirds

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes