Posted by Brent Wilson on 8/13/2016 to Flower Gardening
When thinking about Hosta lilies shade is usually what first comes to mind. Though all Hosta varieties will grow in shade to partial shade, others have demonstrated the ability to tolerate more sun. Even most shade-loving Hosta varieties will appreciate a few hours of morning sun or filtered sun to perform and look and flower their best. That said. I don't suggest planting any variety of Hosta in all-day full sun where leaves on plants exposed to mid-afternoon direct sunlight will often suffer some leaf scorch or discoloration. This is especially true in warmer climates of the South.
Based on my many years of growing hostas in my own gardens and at our nursery, it's the varieties with yellow or golden leaves and/or fragrant flowers that tend to handle more sun, though this isn't always true. In general though, hostas with yellow leaves will need at least a few hours of direct sunlight in the morning or evening to display their best color. For example, the leaves of 'Sum & Substance', a yellow leaved hosta, will turn to a chartreuse to apple green color in mostly shade. As with the yellow hostas, to encourage the best flower development, fragrant hostas in the species Hosta plantaginea will also need at least a couple hours of direct sun exposure.
Hostas with blue, green or mostly white leaves tend to prefer life on the shadier side. That said, in the listing of sun tolerant varieties below, you'll find some green and variegated varieties that are known to tolerate more sun.
Hosta Varieties That Tolerate More Sun
Based on my experience and from feedback from many customers over the years, and from the American Hosta Society, here's a list of the Hosta lily varieties that are known to tolerate more sun. Keep in mind that dependent on your location and the exact sun exposure and other growing conditions, and the specific preferences of sunique varieties, results may vary.
Yellow Leaved Hosta
August Moon, Gold Regal, Golden Sculpture Rising Sun, Squash Casserole, Sum and Substance, Sun Power
Sum and Substance
Yellow Variegated Leaved Hosta
Gold Standard, Inniswood, Regal Splendor, Sundance
Fragrant Flowered Hosta
Hosta plantaginea, Aphrodite, Fragrant Bouquet, Fried Green Tomatoes, Guacamole, Honeybells, Invincible, Royal Standard, Summer Fragrance, So Sweet, Sugar & Cream
White Variegated Leaved Hosta
Hosta undulata 'Albomarginata', Francee, Minuteman, Patriot
Green Leaved Hosta
Invincible, Pearl Lake
Other Hosta Tips
Keep in mind that full sun in the morning and evening hours will not be as intense as the full sun from noon to 4 or 5 in the afternoon.
Hosta growing in more sun might require more water to prevent leaf scorch.
In dry climates, to help soil retain more moisture, at planting time mix in some peat moss and/or other composted organic matter with the soil removed from the planting hole.
Spread a 1 to 2 inch layer of aged shredded wood mulch or pine straw around plants to help retain soil moisture. Mulch will also help to prevent weeds and will decompose into rich organic matter your hosta will appreciate.
Hope this information is helpful. Don't hesitate to contact us if you need more details or have any questions.
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