If you are looking for a beautiful plant to brighten up your shade garden, you can't go wrong with hostas. This perennial originated in various Asian countries and became popular in the U.S. in the 1800s. Hostas are durable and easy to care for, making them great for gardeners of all skill levels. Better yet, they come in a wide range of varieties, so there's a unique option for every backyard style preference.
The Komodo Dragon is one of the largest varieties in the hosta family. It should be planted in an area where it has plenty of room to stretch out, as it can grow up to 30 inches tall and seven feet wide. When fully grown, the plant features a cascading pyramid of dark blue-green leaves with deep lines that stretch from the stem to the tip.
During the peak of summer, stalks sprout up from the plant as high as four feet, bearing funnel-shaped flowers with a light purple hue. This is a zone four plant, which means it can withstand temperatures of up to -30 degrees Fahrenheit.
The June plant is one of the more sun-tolerant varieties in the hosta family. It can grow up to two feet tall and two and a half feet wide. This gorgeous plant produces dark-green leaves and, in the summer, the middle of the leaf develops gold streaks that look painted on.
The plant can only spend around four to five hours in direct sunlight, but the maximum time will give you boldly golden centers. You can plant your June hostas in clay soil, or any other soil that is moist and well-drained.
The Sagae hosta is an eye-catching option that features thick, wavy, frosted-green leaves with golden edges that turn milky white when they are left out in the sun for a long time. The white hue is not an indication of the plant's health. However, if the leaves start to turn a brownish color around the edges, you will need to find a way to add more shade to the area.
During the summer, the plant sprouts tiny purple flowers. The Sagae can thrive in USDA zones 4 through 8, which means they’ll flourish in most parts of the country. The thickness of the leaves makes them more resistant to slugs.
The August Lily is the most fragrant of all of the hosta plants. It features mounds of bright green leaves with deep, parallel veins. This plant is known for its stunning white flowers that bloom in mid to late summer. August Lilies can withstand longer periods of sunshine as long as it is planted in moist soil.
This type of hosta gets its name from its long, wavy leaves. The plant is one of the smaller in the family, which makes it a perfect choice for outdoor pots: it only gets about 6 inches tall and 16 inches wide.
This durable plant can thrive in zones three through nine and does best when it receives sun in the morning and shade in the evening.
This stunningly variegated plant features gorgeous heart-shaped leaves that change colors throughout the year. Beginning as dark green with a pale yellow-green center, the fronds change to a pale green and bright ivory in the warmer months. During the summer, towering stalks spout from the plant and feature a pale lavender bloom. Whirlwinds should be planted in a shady area that has moist soil.
This unique, tri-colored hosta will dazzle up any garden. The oval leaves have deep green edges with vibrant yellow centers that are outlined in a splash of white. In the mid-summer, pale lilac-pink flowers emerge to make the plant even more eye-catching.
Sow color festival hostas in normal or slightly acidic soil. They will flourish in zones three through nine, which means they can handle both cold and warm temperatures.
The Patriot is one of the most popular variegated hostas. Its sharp oval leaves feature a dark-green center and pale white edges. It can thrive in zones four through eight and has a higher heat tolerance than most varieties. The dense mounds of satin-like leaves can grow up to 20 inches tall and 30 inches wide. Place your Patriot in a pot or plant it directly in moist, well-drained soil.
This award-winning hosta variety thrives in partly shaded or full-shade areas that contain rich, well-drained soil. The wide, heart-shaped leaves have a deep green center that runs towards the light-green edges. During the summer, pale, lilac-colored flowers rise on scapes 30 inches tall.
If you have a small garden, Halcyon may be the perfect hosta for you. It can get up to 18 inches tall and three to four feet wide and features deep blue-green, heart-shaped leaves that are thick and slug-resistant. During the warmer months, the Halcyon sprouts a pale lavender flower.
This plant can thrive in zones four through eight and should be planted in partial or full-shade areas.