Hostas, or plantain lilies, are a shade loving perennial with many different leaf textures, colors and sizes, and flowers that are either white, or a shade of purple or violet. The leaves of the hosta plant are known for their ability to blanket an area, and for their clean, crisp texture. The foliage can be a variety of colors and shades that range from chartreuse, to blue-green, and include many other variegated varieties. The flowers form on long stems that reach high above the foliage below, with some growing to 18”-24”. The size of leaf and flower greatly differ between varieties of Hosta, as does the color of both the foliage and blooms.
One of the best perennials for shade gardens, Hostas are well known for their ability to withstand full shade or partial shade. Their large broad leaves allow them to more efficiently collect the suns energy in areas with low light than most other plants. They are great plants for borders, or as an individual specimen on their own. The hosta plant grows from rhizomes, which are underground, and can easily be dug up and divided each year. A deciduous perennial, Hostas leaves die back in late summer, and can easily be removed or cut from the base of the plant, which and can be left in place to over winter too.
With an easy care nature, and shade loving habit, Hostas are one of the most commonly grown plants for gardeners and landscapers alike. Hostas prefer a soil mixture that contains organic matter and are not suited for areas with poor soil or soil that drains too quickly, such as sandy soils. They are known for their clumping habit, and do gradually grow wider as each season progresses. Once they are established, the rhizomes can be divided, and replanted in a new location. Hostas are great for low maintenance gardens, and make a great focal point for shady areas.