There are 58+ fragrant hostas, all with their roots in H. plantaginea!
H. plantaginea is the only fragrant species hosta, so any hosta with fragrance has H. plantaginea in its background.
Almost all of H. plantaginea offspring except H. ‘Fragrant Blue’ have a wonderful fragrance. Fragrant hostas need ample sun to create a bloom.
H. plantaginea has the largest bloom of all hostas–approximately 6 inches. The bloom is pure white and the most fragrant of all hosta blooms.
This plant blooms around 4 p.m. instead of 7 a.m. like most other hostas! H. plantaginea is also unique in its ability to “reflush” new foliage during the summer months. (Most hosta species send up all their foliage in the spring).
H. plantaginea originated in eastern China, near Beijing and Shanghai, where it can be hot and humid. This means that fragrant hostas are often the most heat tolerant and can do well in the southern United States up to zone 8 and sometimes even zone 9.
H. plantaginea was commonly known as “August lily.” It was brought to Europe in the 1790’s.
H. plantaginea is a top hosta for hybridizing!
Because of the excellent traits of H. plantaginea, including large fragrant blooms, heat and humidity tolerance, beautiful form, “reflushing” of foliage, vigorous growth, and leaf sheen, it has been popular in hybridizing. There have also been many sports from H. plantaginea and its offspring.
H. plantaginea ‘Aphrodite’, often called just H. ‘Aphrodite’, is a spectacular double-blooming, fragrant hosta and a sport of plantaginea. Some people have a difficult time getting this hosta to bloom. It seems to need moist soil, warm days and cool nights and plenty of sun to get it to bloom. At HostasDirect, Inc. we have never had a problem getting ours to bloom.
Deer prefer fragrant hostas
Beware! Deer tend to eat fragrant hostas first! They apparently have a sweeter taste.