Hosta – Plantain Lily
Two sorts of flowers have been called Day Lilies-Funkia (or Hosta, as it is sometimes called) and Hemerocallis. Both are old favorites in the garden. The flowers of the latter group are orange and yellow Most of the Funkias are grown for their excellent foliage which is produced in clumps. The one most commonly grown in our gardens is the Corfu Lily (F. grandifjora or subcordata). Its leaves are a glossy light green color with spikes of pure white Lily-like flowers It grows about 2 feet high and spreads in a circle about 3 feet across The flowers are very fragrant, appearing during August and September. The Common Day Lily (F. ccerulea)grows 1 1/2 feet high, blooms during July, and has mauve or blue drooping flowers. F. Sieboldiana is one of the strongest growers in this group. It is 2 1/2 feet tall, has white flowers tinged with lilac produced in July and has very large, grayish-green leaves. There are some of these Plantain Lilies with variegated foliage, bright green margined in white, of which F. undulata variegata is one of the best. They keep on growing, improving every year as the clumps increase in size.
UTILIZE. Funkias are perhaps most useful in the various kinds of borders. The dwarfer variegated kinds are used for edging purposes. They can be used as specimen plants in the lawn, planted near lakes or streams, or grouped around shrubbery. Both the foliage and flowers are distinct, beautiful and attractive wherever planted. Some of them are used in rock gardens. They are excellent plants for the strip of soil near the house in the shade which is common-about most of our homes.
GENERAL. Before planting the Day Lilies, the ground should be prepared to a good depth and enriched with manure. They grow best in a moderately rich soil where a good supply of moisture is available. They will grow either in sunlight or shade, but they grow best in partial shade, even in the northern exposures, where very few other plants will grow.
PROPAGATION. The division of the root clumps is the easiest method of propagating the Day Lilies. Some produce seeds which grow readily if planted soon after the seeds ripen.