Hosta lancifolia
Common Name: narrow-leaved hosta 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Asparagaceae
Native Range: Garden origin
Zone: 3 to 8
Height: 0.75 to 1.00 feet
Spread: 1.00 to 1.50 feet
Bloom Time: July to September
Bloom Description: Violet
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy, Good Cut
Attracts: Hummingbirds
Tolerate: Drought, Heavy Shade, Clay Soil, Dry Soil, Black Walnut


Easily grown in evenly moist, organically rich, well-drained soils in part shade to full shade. Best in part shade (some morning sun or sun dappled conditions). Established plants have some tolerance for dry shade (particularly plants with thick leaves), but soils should never be allowed to dry out. Full size and quality form are best achieved with consistent moisture. 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. Plant in locations protected from wind.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Hosta lancifolia is an erect, vase-shaped, medium hosta to 12" tall featuring a mound of lance-shaped, wavy-margined leaves that are medium green above and a glossy, lighter green beneath and racemes of funnel-shaped, violet flowers on arching scapes to 20". A dependable and versatile perennial requiring little care. Grown primarily for its beautiful foliage which provides color, contrast and texture to the landscape. Dense foliage crowds out most garden weeds. Somewhat stoloniferous.

May also be listed as Hosta 'Lancifolia'.

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 with lance-like foliage.

Funkia remains a popular common name today in some areas. An additional common name for plants in this genus is plantain lily (foliage is somewhat plantain-like and flowers are somewhat lily-like in some species).


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.


A mainstay of the shade garden. This small to medium hosta can be mixed with other perennials in the border or woodland garden, used as an edging plant or massed and divided to create a dense ground cover.