Hosta clausa (Plantain Lily)

Scientific Name

Hosta clausa Nakai

Common Names

Plantain Lily


Hosta clausa var. clausa, Hosta ensata, Hosta japonica var. lancifolia

Scientific Classification

Family: Asparagaceae
Subfamily: Agavoideae
Genus: Hosta


Color: Purple
Bloom Time: Late summer


Hosta clausa is a medium-sized Hosta that typically grows in a rounded clump up to 12 inches (30 cm) tall and wide. It is a sterile triploid that is noted for producing purple flower buds that do not open. Unopened buds eventually drop to the ground in the fall without producing fruit. Leaves are shiny, narrow-oval to elliptic, medium to dark green, up to 6 inches (15 cm) long, and have closely spaced veins and acute tips. The purple flower buds appear in late summer on scapes rising up to 30 inches (75 cm) tall.

Hosta clausa (Plantain Lily)
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USDA hardiness zones 3a to 8b: from −40 °F (−40 °C) to 20 °F (−6.7 °C).

How to Grow and Care

The color of a Hosta's leaves can help determine how much light it prefers. Blue and deep green varieties like deeper shade, while variegated (striped or splotched bicolor leaves) and yellowish varieties require some morning sun. Harsh afternoon sun can scorch Hosta leaves.

Hostas prefer an inch (2.5 cm) of water a week, whether from rainfall or irrigation. If you water by hand, do so early in the day. Burnt leaf tips and drooping leaves are signals of inadequate water.

Rich, slightly acidic, well-draining soil produces the best Hostas. Add organic matter such as compost, manure, leaf mold, or peat moss when preparing the planting hole. Mix well, and do not let manure contact the roots directly because this can cause discoloration of the leaves.

Apply a 10-10-10 or 5-10-5 all-purpose fertilizer according to package directions if the soil is poor. Otherwise, topdress with well-rotted manure or compost.

Plant Hostas in spring or fall. Bury the crown slightly so it will stay moist, unless the soil is very heavy, in which case leave the crown at ground level. Leave a depression around the plant so that at first watering, the water soaks directly toward the root. See more at How to Grow and Care for Hostas.


Hosta clausa is native to Korea.


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