Hostas: Don't Overlook these Shade-Loving Perennials

Updated: Mar 24

Hostas are tried and true foundational plants in a shade garden. If you are looking to affordably fill a large shady area this is the plant for you! What excites us most about Hostas is the tremendous variation among these plants. There are inumerable varieties of Hostas in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, including ground cover Hostas, miniature Hostas perfect for containers, giant hostas with massive leaves, variegated Hostas in a variety of colors and patterns, Hostas grown for their flowers, Hostas grown for the scent of their flowers, and Hostas with beautifully textured leaves. You could create a stunning garden from Hostas alone!


A FEW THINGS TO CONSIDER

  • Deer love Hostas so if you are already struggling to keep these animals out of your yard we do not recommend planting them.

  • Because Hostas are such prolific spreaders it is advisable to divide them every 3-4 years in the fall as they go dormant.

  • Hostas have spiky purple or white blooms - fun fact: the white flowers tend to have a stronger and sweeter scent than the purple ones!

  • Most Hostas do not tolerate sunlight well, though the more fragrant and yellow-leafed varieties tolerate sun, heat, and humidity the best. Variegated varieties will become more yellow the more sun they receive.

  • Follow planting guidelines on tags for hostas, because they fill in so quickly and planting them too closely together can cause foliage problems.

  • Hostas like well draining soil.

  • When planting Hostas consider characteristics such as size, leaf texture, color, flowers, and overall shape.


A FEW WAYS TO INCORPORATE HOSTAS INTO YOUR LANDSCAPE


PAIR WITH OTHER SHADE LOVING PLANTS

Often known as the queen of the shade garden, Hostas are a beautiful accent to other shade loving plants such as Columbines, Heuchera, Rhodedendrons, Astilbes, and Camellias.


GO BIG OR GO HOME

There are giant varieties of Hostas available that can grow up to 3ft high (4ft with their flowers). These massive plants certainly make a statement! Varieties to consider: Big Daddy Hosta - this one lives up to its name and is beautiful on its own or accented by other plants.



JAZZ UP A CONTAINER

Miniature varieties such as Blue Mouse Ears are great container plants. Their round growing habit and symmetrical form also make them great in the ground!



MIX & MATCH

Play around with different leaf colors, patterns, and silhouettes. We did not exaggerate when we said you could create a stunning garden from Hostas alone! (Don't like how you planted them? Hostas are robust enough that you can carefully dig up them up and relocate them without causing damage). Varieties to consider: Wide Brim - blue/green leaves with a buttery yellow border; Ben Vernooy - offering some of the thickest variegated leaves of any Hosta; Colored Hulk Hosta - chartreuse with dark green borders this Hosta adds colors to any shady space; El Nino - thick, heart-shaped blue-green leaves with white margins; Fried Bananas - change it up with these golden-colored leaves that almost look neon!



DON'T FORGET ABOUT TEXTURE

Some hostas have beautiful seer-suckered leaves, while others appear cupped and draw the eye in. Varieties to consider: Abiqua Drinking Gourd - an extremely distinctive variety with thick, dark blue-green textured leaves, its stunning!



LEARN MORE ABOUT HOSTAS

  • https://www.favoriteperennials.com/hostas/

  • https://www.theplantman.net/hostas

  • https://www.thespruce.com/how-to-plant-hostas-3963861

You'll find these varieties and more available at Painters Greenhouse now.

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