Hosta plantaginea

Tried and Trouble-free Recommended by 3 Professionals
Common Name: hosta
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Asparagaceae
Native Range: China
Zone: 3 to 9
Height: 1.00 to 1.50 feet
Spread: 1.50 to 2.00 feet
Bloom Time: August to September
Bloom Description: White
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy, Fragrant, Good Cut
Attracts: Hummingbirds
Tolerate: Heavy Shade, Black Walnut


Easily grown in average, medium moisture, well-drained soils in part shade to full shade. Tolerant of a wide range of soil conditions. Performs best in rich, moist, organic soils. Plants need consistent moisture during the growing season. Water is best applied directly to the soil beneath the leaves. Divide plants as needed in spring or autumn. Division is usually easiest in early spring before the leaves unfurl.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Hosta plantaginea is an erect and spreading, medium hosta which features bright glossy, nearly round, heart-shaped, light yellowish green leaves and very large (3-4" long), waxy, trumpet-shaped, white, heavily fragrant flowers on scapes up to 30". A dependable and versatile perennial requiring little care. Grown for both its beautiful foliage and its large, fragrant flowers. Flowers are considered among the best in the Hosta genus. Dense foliage crowds out garden weeds. Sometimes commonly called August lily in reference to its late summer bloom time.

Genus name honors Austrian botanist Nicholas Thomas Host (1761-1834) and was first established in 1812. The genus was subsequently renamed in 1817 as Funkia in honor of botanist Heinrich Christian Funk under the belief at that time that Hosta was an invalid name. Hosta was finally reinstated as the genus name in 1905 by the International Botanical Congress.

Specific epithet means resembling a plantain.


Although slugs and snails can be serious problems, and leaf spot and crown rot lesser problems, hostas are otherwise virtually disease and pest-free, and are ideal, low-maintenance garden perennials.

Garden Uses

A mainstay of the shade garden. This medium hosta can be mixed with other perennials in the border, woodland garden or natural area or can be massed to cover large areas. This species can be particularly effective as a specimen.