GROUND COVER HOSTAS

Hostas are an ideal shade-tolerant ground cover since they are easy-to-grow, low maintenance plants. When planted in mass as a ground cover, they provide an attractive and lush covering, particularly under trees where shade and roots make grass difficult to grow.

As a ground cover, hostas are best where the soil remains slightly moist. Excessively dry soil may cause the foliage to burn around the margins or partially die back. An irrigation system or additional watering during periods of drought may be necessary for optimal growth.

There are some hosta varieties which can tolerate long hours of direct sunlight. In full sun, however, the leaf color of many cultivars turns pale by mid-summer, and leaf dieback may be somewhat severe, especially during dry periods.

While large hostas make wonderful specimen plants, smaller varieties are more suited for ground covers. Often, a single variety that is known to be a fast grower is mass planted close together, quickly forming a thick mat of foliage to cover the ground and prevent weed growth. Because hostas spread, but not to the point of becoming invasive, it's relatively easy to cover a large area of the landscape in a short period of time.

In addition, hostas can be used as edging plants to soften the line between the garden and lawn, or along a sidewalk or paved area. Another common application is to form a tree ring. Usually a single variety is used to accomplish this and the result is very effective.

The following list of ground cover hostas includes those which are small to medium in size and which are known to be fast, dependable, and compact growers, capable of readily producing a carpet of thick foliage.

  • 'Abby'
  • 'Abiqua Blue Edger'
  • 'Abiqua Delight'
  • 'Abiqua Ground Cover'
  • 'Academy Verdant Verge'
  • 'Allan P. McConnell'
  • 'Alpine Dream'
  • 'Amber Tiara'
  • 'Amy Elizabeth'
  • 'Aoki'
  • 'Atomic Elvis'
  • 'Beauty Little Blue'
  • 'Betsy King'
  • 'Birchwood Gem'
  • 'Bitsy Gold'
  • 'Bitsy Green'
  • 'Bitter Lemons'
  • 'Blazing Saddles'
  • 'Blonde Elf'
  • 'Blue Cadet'
  • 'Blue Skies'
  • 'Bold Edger'
  • 'Bunchoko'
  • 'Butter Rim'
  • 'Carrie Ann'
  • 'Change of Tradition'
  • 'Chartreuse'
  • 'Chartreuse Wiggles'
  • 'Cherub'
  • 'Chinese Sunrise'
  • clausa var. clausa
  • clausa var. normalis
  • 'Cleopatra'
  • 'Cordelia'
  • 'Decorata'
  • 'Diamond Tiara'
  • 'Ebony Spires'
  • 'Elfin Power'
  • 'Emerald Ripples'
  • 'Emerald Tiara'
  • 'Feather Boa'
  • 'Floradora'
  • 'Fortunei Hyacinthina'
  • 'Foundling'
  • 'Fresh'
  • 'Gingee'
  • 'Ginko Craig'
  • 'Glen Tiara'
  • 'Gold Cadet'
  • 'Gold Drop'
  • 'Gold Edger'
  • 'Gold Standard'
  • 'Golden Spades'
  • 'Golden Tiara'
  • 'Golden Woge'
  • 'Gorgeous George'
  • 'Grand Prize'
  • 'Grand Tiara'
  • 'Grant Park'
  • 'Green Gold'
  • 'Green Kabitan'
  • 'Green Smash'
  • 'Ground Master'
  • 'Hacksaw'
  • 'Heartbeat'
  • 'Heartleaf'
  • 'Heavenly Tiara'
  • 'Herifu'
  • 'Hush Puppie'
  • 'Ice Cream'
  • 'Iced Lemon'
  • 'Indy Parade Lap'
  • 'Inky Dinky'
  • 'Invincible'
  • 'Iszat U Doc'
  • 'Jade Scepter'
  • 'Jadette'
  • 'Jennifer'
  • 'Joyful'
  • 'Kabitan'
  • laevigata
  • 'Lakeside Neat Petite'
  • 'Lakeside Ninita'
  • 'Lancifolia'
  • 'Lemon Delight'
  • 'Lemon Frost'
  • 'Lemon Lime'
  • 'Little Aurora'
  • 'Little Bo Peep'
  • 'Little Jim'
  • 'Little Lemon Drop'
  • 'Little Miss Magic'
  • 'Little Wonder'
  • 'Livonia'
  • longissima
  • 'Maraschino Cherry'
  • 'Marilyn'
  • 'Marion Bachman'
  • 'Maui Rains'
  • 'Mini Ha Ha'
  • 'Monashee Blue Cup'
  • 'Muffie'
  • 'Namiohidori'
  • 'Olympic Edger'
  • 'Opipara' ('Bill Brincka')
  • 'Pacific Blue Edger'
  • 'Paradise Goldheart'
  • 'PeeDee Gold Flash'
  • 'PeeDee Laughing River'
  • 'Pineapple Poll'
  • 'Platinum Tiara'
  • 'Popo'
  • 'Radio Waves'
  • 'Rain Forest'
  • 'Rainforest Sunrise'
  • 'Raspberry Sorbet'
  • 'Ray of Hope'
  • 'Red October'
  • 'Resonance'
  • 'Rhythm and Blues'
  • 'Rickrack'
  • 'Roller Coaster Ride'
  • 'Royal Accolade'
  • 'Royalty'
  • 'Saishu Jima'
  • 'Satin Bloomers'
  • 'Sea Octopus'
  • 'Sentinels'
  • 'Serendipity'
  • 'Sharmon'
  • 'Shell Bell'
  • 'Shiro Kabitan'
  • sieboldii
  • 'Snow Flakes'
  • 'Snowstorm'
  • 'Stiletto'
  • 'Tardiflora'
  • 'The Twister'
  • 'Thumbelina'
  • 'Topaz Tiara'
  • 'Traveler'
  • 'Tropical Storm'
  • 'Twist of Lime'
  • 'Vanilla Cream'
  • venusta
  • 'Vera Verde'
  • 'Verna Jean'
  • 'Winsome'
  • 'Yellow Eyes'
  • 'Yellow Splash Rim'
  • 'Zager Blue

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