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Blue Plantain Lily (Hosta ventricosa (Salisb.) Stearn)

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A perennial native to China and widely planted in gardens, escaped into the wild on some sites; the Hosta most likely to establish in the wild in North America.

Range - Expand

Introduced or Not Present

This map is based on our research. We have checked its accuracy to Level 3 ecoregions. Although this plant occurs somewhere in each of these regions, it may only occur in a small part of some or all of them.


In its native range, it is found mostly on rocky soils near bodies of water, in sloped or hilly terrain, at mid-to-higher elevations, 1,600-7,800 feet.

Details of this plant's potential habitat preferences in North America are not well-known. It spreads slowly and is most common in anthropogenic habitats near where it was originally planted in gardens. In the cooler parts of its introduced range, in New England, it can be found in sunnier habitats, including forest edges as well as meadows and fields. Farther south it is usually more restricted to shadier sites.

It usually grows best on sites with some direct sunlight in the morning, but shaded the rest of the day. It tolerates a wide range of soils, including rock, clay, and sand, so long as there is sufficient organic matter. It prefers average moisture conditions; plants growing in shade are more tolerant of dry conditions.

Faunal Associations

This plant usually supports few insects. Although the flowers are usually self-pollinated and the plant primarily reproduces asexually, bees and hummingbirds are attracted to the flowers. Snails and slugs sometimes consume the foliage.

Although there are 22 known Hosta species and 2 hybrids, only two others have established in the wild in North America, both less commonly than this species: narrowleaf plantain lily (Hosta lancifolia) and fragrant plantain lily (Hosta plantaginea).

Hosta ventricosa (blue plantain lily) | USDA PLANTS Database (About This Site)

Hosta ventricosa | Go Botany (About This Site)

Blue Plantain-Lily | iNaturalist (About This Site)

Hosta ventricosa (Hosta) | Missouri Botanical Garden Plant Finder (About This Site)

Hosta ventricosa | Biota of North America Project (BONAP) (About This Site)

Hosta ventricosa | NatureServe Explorer (About This Site)

Hosta ventricosa | Flora of North America (About This Site)

Blue Hosta | Maryland Biodiversity Project (About This Site)

Hosta ventricosa Stearn | Plants of the World Online (POWO) (About This Site)